Bradford’s St James’s Market has once again been awarded the Best Wholesale Market at the Great British Markets Awards.
This is the third time in five years that the Bradford Council-run market has scooped the award from the National Association of British Market Authorities, this year taking it back from New Covent Garden in London.
The market has 35 traders trading from 66 units, which each week supplies fresh fruit and vegetables, fish, exotic produce and pre-packed produce to over 3500 shops, restaurants and hotels from across the district and the UK.
The market is leading the way with green initiatives such as recycling 80% of all waste from the site and installing solar panels to generate its own electricity as well as other energy saving initiatives.
Over the past 7 years the market has developed strong links with the community of Bradford, running educational programmes about the journey of fresh food from farm to fork and offering Community Work Placements for jobseekers. The market is now looking at how it can help those in food poverty by donating some of its unsold fruit and vegetables to community groups across Bradford.
Colin Wolstenholme Markets Manager for Bradford Council said: “We are delighted that our wholesale market has won this award for a record three times. It is a testament to the hard work that the traders and officers have put in to making St James’s Wholesale Market such a success.”
Councillor Susan Hinchcliffe, Bradford Council’s Executive Member of Employment, Skills and Culture said: “We have some fantastic markets and independent food retailers in our district and it is great to have it confirmed that Bradford has the best wholesale market in the UK. Staff and tenants should be very proud of this accolade.”
Johnathan Kershaw, Secretary of the Tenants’ Association said: “It is great news to have been awarded Wholesale Market of the year 2015 and to have wrestled back this accolade from our great and respected rivals at New Covent Garden. It is extremely satisfying to know that the efforts that have been put into the continual improvement of St James’s Market and for the recognition that our facility provides customers throughout the region with a best in class shopping experience. I would like to express my sincere thanks to our Tenants Association, Bradford Council and our customers for their continued efforts and support, this award is for us all and will be very well received.”
Jeremy Bradin, Director of award sponsors, KPR Midlink Ltd, said: “The entries this year, yet again, show the tremendous effort markets staff put into their work, and the diversity of the markets offer out there at the moment. There were an increasing number of private market entries alongside the local authority entries which indicates a broadening interest in the competition which can only be good for everyone involved in it.”
The other major Wholesale Markets in the country can be found in Manchester, Birmingham, Liverpool, Glasgow and in London the big four of New Covent Garden, Billingsgate, Smithfield and Spitalfields.