The Mayor and City Council (M&CC) will be reviewing vending along Robb Street, Town Clerk Royston King has said.
The decision was taken as a result of stall holders from the Bourda Green complaining to King about unfair competition by vendors selling along Robb and Bourda streets, although many of them have stalls.
Vendors said a lot of customers seem to prefer to stop their vehicles in the middle of the street and shop.
As a result, during a meeting with the vendors on Thursday at City Hall, King told the vendors that the council will reexamine allowing vending on Robb Street. He said it would also repossess stalls that have been neglected in the Bourda Green and redistribute them to vendors who need them.
It was noted that some stall holders have been using their stalls as bonds and opt instead to go out on Robb Street to vend, thereby undercutting those who remain on the Bourda Green.
Stall holder Seema Barry stated that some time ago, the persons that sold goods wholesale were granted permission to do so on the roads from 4 pm to 6 am, after which they would have to move so that the vendors within the market would be able to make sales. “Those vendors who want to do wholesale should be placed in the mall [Merriman Mall] and they should take the other vendors inside the market,” Barry suggested.
She further stated that she voiced her concerns to King some time ago and was told to get her vehicle and go and sell on Robb Street with the other vendors. “Why would I go pile up on the road when they have stalls inside here?” she, however, questioned.
Some of the empty stalls have become a haven for vagrants and rodents. The few stall holders that still conduct business on the Bourda Green still look over some of the empty stalls just to ward off vagrants and vermin.
A stall holder, who identified himself as “Mr West,” stated that most of the vendors inside the market have complained about the declining sales and also about a broken bridge at one of the entrances to the market. They have been complaining to the M&CC for about a year over the bridge and despite complying with instructions to move their sheds to facilitate repairs, nothing has been done, he said. As a result, he noted that he feels the M&CC does not care for vendors who still operate within the market.
Barry and other vendors also said that there is no security in the market, which is also responsible for the scarcity of customers as many persons fear for their safety.
During the meeting on Thursday, King also addressed the issue of security in the market and stated that he made contact with acting Chief Constable to have a joint operation to rid the market of loiterers.