Byron Bay’s monthly community market and the weekly farmers market are to be temporarily relocated for six months while the Byron bypass is being constructed.
From July the community market will move to the beachfront and the farmers market will move to the Cavanbah Centre, and locals and visitors who love the markets are urged to continue the great tradition of their monthly poke around artisan stalls or doing their weekly shop and buying produce.
Byron Shire Mayor Simon Richardson says the Byron markets are great cultural icons of the community. ‘They are amazing economic incubators and all councillors are strong supporters of the markets and the fabulous businesses that trade there,’ he said.
The operators of both markets have been working closely with Council for months, trying to find alternative sites for the markets.
‘Staff and market operators have gone through an exhaustive process to find temporary sites, on either council-managed or private land, that will accommodate stall holders and visitors and the beachfront and Cavanbah Centre are seen to be the most viable venues available,’ said Richardson.
Community Market stall holder Megan Campbell says it is a welcome relocation of the much-loved local market to Byron’s beachfront. ‘We’re looking forward and feel united to be bringing the very best we have to offer,’ she said.
Market manager Kate Hardman says that she is delighted to have an outcome that all stakeholders are satisfied with and believes the beachfront option was a clear frontrunner, as it ticked all the boxes from the start. ‘I’m really happy to see that the move to Byron beachside was supported unanimously by the Byron Markets Stallholder Relocation Committee,’ she said. ‘The location can accommodate all regular stall holders.
‘Although we’d prefer not to have to move, the decision to relocate to the beachfront is an exciting opportunity to revive the community market in this iconic location.’
Mayor Richardson said that when you balance the constraints of the temporary sites with cancellation of the markets for six months, the move is the best option.
‘Market stalls are businesses providing regular incomes for people and families, many of them locals, and to cancel the markets would have a huge impact on their livelihoods.
‘Change is difficult for people but this is only short-term so I am hoping that local residents and regular market goers will make a conscious decision to continue to support the markets, and the stall holders, as they have done for years.
‘Keep supporting, keep loving our markets and keep the tradition of a great experience alive,’ he said.
The markets will move back to the Butler Street Reserve in February 2020.