Business improving for market traders as lockdown eases
- Credit: BEN JOLLEY
Traders on Ely Market say they are optimistic that business will continue to pick up as Covid-19 lockdown rules are eased.
Ahead of high street shops being able to reopen to the public from April 12, we visited Ely Market to hear how business is going for outdoor traders who haven't had to shut.
Andrew Golding, of Goldings of Outwell, said that business is "very good - the nursery and garden centre trade is very busy at the moment.
"Because of the pandemic, everyone has been spending time in their garden and investing in them."
He added that lockdown has even lead to an improvement in the gardening trade.
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"As people are at home and there's nothing else to do - plus the fact that the weather hasn't been great - everybody is very busy in this industry."
He's also noticed that, since the lockdown, traders that have been able to sell on Ely Market has been very busy.
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"This is because it's outdoor shopping, as opposed to indoor supermarkets. They feel a lot more safer."
He also thinks that people are more inclined to shop local now, too.
"It's a case of using their local traders and everything, so trade on the market has increased."
In the gardening trade, with plants and flowers, he's optimistic for another good year.
"A lot of people will be staying at home this year, now they've done their gardens and spent a lot of time and money on them, we do think that it will carry on again."
Another trader, Roly Allen, who runs seafood stall Rol The Fish, said "being outdoors is one of the best places to go and shop."
Having been able to remain open throughout the lockdown, he said that business has been "very very steady - but a definite improvement on last year.
"People have got a bit braver to go out and about," he added, saying that he's hopeful the market overall will start to pick up from April 12.
If there's one good thing to have come out of the pandemic, though, he says it's that people are shopping local.
"It's shown people that they need to use their local businesses and keep them going."