‘Village’ emerges in South Shields town centre after traders are moved

Stallholders John Prendergast and Sue Houston.
Stallholders John Prendergast and Sue Houston.

A new ‘village’ has emerged in South Shields town centre after market traders were temporarily moved on.

The town’s Market Place is undergoing an extensive revamp as part of the borough council’s £100million ‘365’ masterplan, with a new road configuration, paving, street furniture and signage.

South Shields 365 plans. St Hildas Village

South Shields 365 plans. St Hildas Village

Earlier this week, the first stage in the transformation of the famous trading area was launched with landscaping of the northern section.

That has required the relocation of about a dozen market traders to an area outside the TSB bank in Barrington Street, adjacent to historic St Hilda’s Church.

And on the first day of trading yesterday, stallholders were upbeat at the change of venue, with work on the first phase of the Market Place redevelopment due to be completed before the end of the year.

One of those relocated, John Prendergast, who has a household goods stall, said: “The area has already been named St Hilda’s Village. We knew there was going to be some disruption and we accept that. It has to be done and this is a good location to be until the work is completed.”

We’re St Hilda’s Village People

Sue Houston

Sue Houston, who has relocated her haberdashery stall, was also positive about her new ‘home’.

She said: “I love it here and it’s just for so many weeks. We’re calling ourselves the St Hilda’s ‘Village People’. I think it’s a nice little spot and the first day of trading here has been good, and it hasn’t even been sunny.”