More investment for Ridley Road: Council to take over part of Ridley Road Shopping Village
A much-loved indoor market in Dalston will be safeguarded for the long-term after the Council approved plans to take over the management and sign a 15 year lease on part of Ridley Road Shopping Village.
The indoor market, home to a mix of independent businesses and traders, was placed under threat recently after the building’s owners put forward plans to redevelop the building. These proposals were withdrawn after the Council backed a community campaign to save Ridley Road Shopping Village and listed the building as an Asset of Community Value, with the owner instead agreeing plans to refurbish the existing building. The planning application to carry out refurbishment works was approved by the Council in November 2021.
The Council is taking the refurbishment opportunity to enter into an agreement to take over management of parts of the building following the refurbishment. This will give existing traders on the ground floor of the indoor market the chance to remain trading at the Shopping Village but under the Council’s management, while Ridley Road street market traders will also have the opportunity to grow their businesses by taking low-cost permanent premises and access to refurbished storage facilities for their stock.
Under plans approved by the Council’s Cabinet on 24 January, the Council will take on the lease and management of the ground floor, which currently includes 40 trading units and will remain as an indoor market, the lower-ground floor for street market trader storage facilities and using part of the first floor for the Council's market’s team offices. The existing offices and workspaces on the first and second floors will be retained and managed by the existing landlord and owner of the building, Rainbow Properties. The Council is in discussion with Rainbow Properties about supporting the current first and second floor occupants of the building. The front of the building will also be upgraded as part of the refurbishment works.
By acquiring a lease for the privately-owned indoor market at the Ridley Road Shopping Village – home to a number of independent businesses and traders and which has previously been under threat from redevelopment – the Council can support local traders and businesses and strengthen Ridley Road’s long-term future.
Bringing the shopping village and the street market together under the Council’s stewardship will strengthen Ridley Road’s position at the heart of Dalston’s economy for the long-term - they will complement each other and will both be managed in the interests of local traders, businesses and residents. This is just the latest in a line of positive investments the Council is making in Dalston, which will safeguard much-loved local places such as Ridley Road and protect what makes the area truly special.
This intervention is great news for market traders, who will gain access to new and improved stalls, better toilet facilities and purpose-built storage units to keep their produce fresh. The Council had already designated the building as an Asset of Community Value, but by taking a long-term lease on part of the building following its refurbishment, it can help protect existing independent businesses in a much-improved building and under the Council’s management.
The move is the latest in Council efforts to securing the long-term future of Ridley Road street market,identified as a key priority by local residents and businesses is one of the commitments set out in the draft Dalston Plan, which sets out a vision for the next 15 years of the town centre based on the views put forward by the local community in the Dalston Conversation – Hackney Council’s biggest ever local engagement exercise which saw input from more than 5,000 people.
This includes introducing new planning rules which protect retail uses along Ridley Road, planting of street trees, free public wifi, and for the market traders new stalls and cashless payment machine. All this is being delivered as part of a £1 million investment into Ridley Road to safeguard the future of the much-loved street market.