No plans to accommodate one-day higglers
A stakeholder has told Falmouth news that the Trelawny Parish Council (TPC) has so far not put forward any plans for one-day “higglers” (hagglers) to be accommodated in the new Falmouth Market (due to be opened soon).
To date, the Trelawny Parish Council has had two meetings with the concerned parties. These meetings were held upstairs the Trelawny Parish Council building near the entrance of the present “Bendung” (Bend Down) market.
Weekly Rental Only
Up to the last meeting, only one possibility has been placed on the table: a weekly rental for shops of different sizes:
- 7 x 4 stall at $2000.00 per week
- 10 x 10 shop at $4000 per week
- 15 x15 shop at $7500.00 per week
These fees were given by Andrew Harrison, CEO of Trelawny Parish Council at the meeting on January 24, 2018.
The plan is for a full-time market to be open 7-days per week. For this to be feasible, most of the vendors would have to live close by.
This is preference being show to local “higglers” (hagglers) would enable them to make selling in the market a full time business.
About the Bendung (Bend Down) Market
The Bendung Market has been around for over 40 years. It is held every Wednesday and is one of the biggest midweek markets in the island.
With the opening of the shipping port in 2011, it was necessary for the market to be moved out of the town to ease the overcrowding in the town.
To solve this problem, a new $350 million market was planned. It is in the final phases of its construction and is due to be open in the next few months. Ironically, it is located on the appropriately named Market Street.
At the present (old) location, the parish council has had a headache trying to collect fees from vendors each market day. They no doubt want it more structured and orderly.
In addition, the town itself has long complained that most of the higglers are from out of town and just come in once per week at “Bendung” market. They sell and leave the parish with millions that are not circulated in the town.
By having only shops with weekly rental, this would go a far way in helping solve this problem. It would create more opportunities for those in the local area to benefit from having shops in the new market.
Bend Down Killer?
But what about the higglers who have made Bend Down what it is? What about those other Jamaican sellers who will not be able to be there every day?
Is Bend Down market no longer a priority? Will this be the Bend Down “Killer” that destroys the weekly market that brings thousands to our town each week?
The local higglers are concerned about their out-of-town counterparts. They want to know what will happen to the one-day sellers.
The Trelawny Parish Council has not yet been able to give an answer. However, there is another chance for a solution to the problem, as the next meeting has been scheduled for mid February.