Plans have been submitted by the City of London Corporation to bring London’s historic food markets to Barking and Dagenham
The proposals will create a new home for Billingsgate, New Spitalfields and Smithfield food markets at Dagenham Dock.
The move will create the country’s largest wholesale food destination across 42 acres of industrial land. Not only will the relocation to Dagenham Dock secure the future of the three historic food markets, it will also provide an economic boost to Barking and Dagenham.
Relocating the food markets to Dagenham Dock will bring a number of environmental benefits too, with the potential to use the nearby rail network and River Thames to transfer goods and produce.
Architects Chetwoods developed the designs to help tackle climate change. The new development will be built with sustainable materials and using the latest environmental technology.
The plans will also deliver a new food school, which will aim to train tomorrow’s market traders, butchers, fishmongers and fruiterers.
The submission of an outline planning application is the latest milestone for the Markets Co-Location Programme, which was formally announced in 2018.
A comprehensive programme of engagement with local residents and businesses, market tenants, local authorities and others has been ongoing since the summer of 2019.
Support London’s food economy
Catherine McGuinness, policy chair at the City of London Corporation, said: “The submission of our outline planning application is another significant step in our journey to creating a new wholesale food market for the UK, London and the South East in Dagenham Dock.
“Relocating the historic Smithfield, New Spitalfields and Billingsgate markets will secure their futures, providing much-needed modern facilities and spaces for our tenants to grow, so they can continue to support London’s food economy for the next generation.
“We are excited that our markets colocation project comes at a time when the borough has ambitious plans for its development. Together, we can play an important role in driving the economic recovery.”
James Tumbridge, chairman of the City Corporation’s Markets committee, added: “People across our markets are making an extraordinary effort to ensure Londoners can continue to get high-quality produce on to their plates.
“As we look beyond the current pandemic, it is so important to invest in the future and help recovery. These plans aim to provide an exciting new home for our markets at Dagenham Dock that will safeguard their long-term future, securing jobs.
“Importantly, a new food school will help to train tomorrow’s market traders by providing the skills required to develop the next generation of butchers, fishmongers, and fruiterers.”
LBBD will now assess the application, before its elected planning committee takes a decision on whether to approve the plans later this year.
If consent is granted, the City Corporation will be required to submit a series of detailed planning applications to the LBBD, with the target of opening the new historic food markets by 2025/2026.