Herne Hill Market Celebrates its 3rd Birthday

 Herne Hill Market celebrates its 3rd Birthday

Herne Hill market was buzzing last Sunday as locals and passers-by alike revelled in the party atmosphere. Celebrating the market’s 3rd birthday, the Herne Hill Forum organised a day of party games, live music, a stand-up comedian and local bands.

Activities ran throughout the day – with eager children putting together their own party ‘leaflet crowns’ and hop garlands. The activity was organised by Blue Patch, which supports local sustainable and ethical businesses.

Dilly Knight-Webb, age 11 said, ‘It’s so much great making garlands and eco-friendly too. You can be so imaginative! You can make nice things out of recycled things – there’s nothing that can’t be used.

Skye Sinclair age 6, agreed, ‘I used sticky tape and this old cereal box to make my crown, and it was really fun’.

Adults also had their chance to get involved, as they took part in a thirty minute dressing-up fashion challenge. Using only a selection of pieces of material, colours and card, teams of three were tasked in creating the most imaginative and unusual costumes for the unsuspecting volunteers. This included a ‘Miss Microsoft’, a blue-wigged, white-sheet-clad Herne Hill local, a ‘Miss Sally’ – complete with luminous eyeshadow and a Greek goddess-style dress, and a Mr Neptune – with a flaming crown and Grecian robes.

Sapphire Groove got passers-by boogying with a one-off group shake dance. Claude Currie, from Brixton, and Tania Pieri, from Brockley, both 34, who make up the duo, surprised locals with their incredible swing dancing and lindy hop moves. Tania said, ‘It’s great to be here and see everyone joining in. My mission is for people to move more freely – they just need the tools to express themselves, whatever their level. It’s just about having fun.’

Local market stall holders, many of whom who have been at the market since it began three years ago were thrilled to still see it thriving.

Carolina Fox, 39, founder of Sweet Carolina, which sells home-made cakes and biscuits, said ‘I have been here since January, and I find that regular clients keep coming back, I get lots of orders. I bake all day and night from home nearby and really enjoy putting my personal touch on everything I make. I go to quite a few markets, but honestly, this is the nicest one. The community is friendly, and you get to know the other traders and locals, who come by and buy the same stuff each week. Long may it continue.’

Nada Lucas, 40 and Karin Mueller, 42, from Little Peaks, who make an assortment of flavoured meringues agree. ‘We are relative newcomers to this market, and have only been up and running for around a year. But the stall is doing well, and this has really helped us to grow our business. There’s a strong community feel. I love the fact there is often music, it keeps the punters coming, and the other stall holders are really friendly, which is not always the case in other markets we’ve been to.’

Passers-by were treated to a fish-boning demonstration by  stallholder Portland Scallop Co., who have been at the market for two  years, and blues music by Dave Peabody and Alan Glen. The local pirate (where else would you expect to find one than in Herne Hill?) was on hand to twist up surprise balloons for eager children, including Isaiah and Elijah Braithwaite-Watson, who went home with a balloon cutlis and brachiosaurus.

After a full day of party festivities, visitors and locals left the Square full of birthday spirit, testament to the huge success the Market has been over the past three years and its continued popularity. There’s lots more to look forward to as we head towards Halloween and the festive season. Happy Birthday Herne Hill Market!

A full image gallery from the day can be found at  http://www.hernehill.org.uk/marketbirthday3