Local Councillors recently inspected Market Walk, the new Covered Market in Woking which opens this month. The £4million project is part of wider Town Centre improvements by the Borough Council which include refurbishing the 1970’s Wolsey Place Shopping Centre and repaving Commercial Way, the retail heart of Woking.
Market Walk replaces the existing Open Market on Victoria Way which is due to be replaced with a new Hotel, Offices and Apartments as part of Town Centre improvements but the Council has promised existing Traders the existing site will remain open for Christmas trading. Councillors were shown around by Hayden Ferriby and Jonathan Owen of Market Consultants Quarterbridge who designed the new facility in conjunction with Benoy Architects. Quarterbridge is also providing interim management services through a newly-formed operating Company, Woking Market Ltd.
The new Market is built in the double-height walkway which previously separated Wolsey Place from the adjacent Peacocks Shopping Centre. A new mezzanine floor was installed to create space for backup storage facilities accessed directly off the Centre’s service yard. The ground floor walkway beneath has been repaved and 15 lockup kiosks installed ranging from 750 to 1800 sq ft.
Two of these are fully-equipped for catering with designated seating areas. Three others are fittedout with fridges and display counters for a Butcher, Delicatessen and Fishmonger and the remainder equipped with lighting, heating and standing-out display areas for greengrocery, florists and fashion sales. The new mezzanine floor is equipped with coldrooms for the fresh food uses and secure storage cages for others.
Hayden Ferriby, Lettings Director for Quarterbridge said:
“Demand for the kiosks has been excellent – too much in fact, but that’s a nice problem to have. It’s still a Market which offers low-cost premises for Stallholders and excellent value for Shoppers. But this investment by the Council in new kiosks, weather protection and equipment gives Stallholders another edge over the multiples”.
Market Walk will trade 7-days and include a further 7 demountable daystalls for Casual Traders. The monthly Farmers and Specialist Markets will still stand in the Town centre’s Jubilee Square. Market Walk facilities now include on-site preparation rooms, Traders WC’s, data cabling to all kiosks and a state-of-the-art ‘Mood ceiling’ with background lighting which changes colour!
Quarterbridge can be contacted on 01206 761000 or via their website: www.quarterbridge.co.uk