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Fishmonger Malcolm Smith: Why I'll quit Eastgate Market

By citizenmike  |  Posted: April 15, 2014

Fishmonger Malcolm Smith is weighing up his options for the future

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POPULAR fishmonger Malcolm Smith says he is considering quitting Eastgate Market in favour of a market which has headhunted him – as the row deepens over whether the market should move or stay.

Eastgate Market traders are being presented with three alternative locations as The Eastgate shopping centre bosses push ahead with a plan to replace them with a TK Maxx store.

But traders are adamant that they do not want to be moved upstairs as they feel it will kill their businesses.

But Mr Smith, who has a veteran of the market, having run a stall there for 35 years, has been approached by a market in Pontypool, Wales, to jump ship. He has been offered rent half the price of Gloucester in a market that has just enjoyed a £2.5million revamp.

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He said: “I don’t want to leave Gloucester because I am the only independent fishmonger now but I have to think about our future and Pontpool is a market for the future. They are investing in the future of their market – why can we do the same in Gloucester?

“We have had some very good years here in recent times but if we are moved upstairs we will close down in no time at all.”

Miriam Bubb, spokesman for the market traders, said: “It would be a real shame to lose Malcolm and it makes you wonder if other traders will also be approached.

“This market has survived in this location for 45 years. We want to protect the city’s heritage and we don’t believe moving upstairs will do that.”

Gloucester City Council has said it will present three options for relocating and the associated costs for traders by the end of May. In June they will conduct research on the streets of Gloucester, and after that traders will have to make their final decision on whether to stay or move.

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  • Gloslgos  |  April 16 2014, 3:01PM

    Evidently 9 paragraphs is too much to proof read!

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  • Douglasknows  |  April 16 2014, 10:48AM

    I'll miss the smell of fish in the morning

  • jas37  |  April 15 2014, 10:54PM

    This is dragging on far too long. The Eastgate Shopping Centre and the City Centre as a whole is screaming out for Retailers such as T K Maxx. -The City Council should be ambitious and decisive and make the best decision for the City as a whole even if it does make them unpopular with the "we don't like change Brigade".

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  • NotThis  |  April 15 2014, 10:31PM

    With so little attention paid by anyone to the raw business facts perhaps we can keep Eastgate Market as it is but open it up as a tourist attraction. This is where your nan used to shop sort of thing. Bored to tears of this story. If this guy has a better offer why doesn't he move? Nonesensical arguments being put forward here. We want TK Maxx! The market needs to embrace new opportunities.

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