Start-up programmes

Photo credit: Kriss Lee 

Start-up opportunities for local people at markets

Chatsworth Road Market Traders’ and Residents’ Association (CRTRA) were the first group in Hackney, East London to launch a start-up trader programme for local residents at its weekly market.

As the market grew from its early stages and expanded, the team wanted to ensure that local residents still felt connected to it and that there were opportunities available to them, if they had ideas for a new product or service.

This entrepreneurial programme was aimed at local people on benefits (postcode and benefit confirmation were part of the application) and provided the opportunity for new traders to launch their own businesses at the market.


  • Connect local people with the street market
  • Create new routes to employment
  • Deliver social value
  • Diversify the commodity mix


  • More than 100 applications received
  • 40 applicants were successfully offered market stalls at Chatsworth Road market.
  • 20 traders successfully completed the programme with 12 of these going on to become regular traders or expanding online and into traditional retail.

Traders who launched through the scheme and have gone on to great success include: Packd (smoothies, now retailed in supermarkets), Daughter of Jon, Vicky’s Donuts and Chale Let’s Eat.

As a result of the success of the programme, Hackney Council launched a borough-wide programme, which offered all first-time traders four weeks free trading at other Hackney markets.

Additional information

The scheme devised an enticing offer for new traders, which included:

  • A free pitch and market stall for four weeks
  • Support from on-site market managers
  • Mentoring and advice from the Chatsworth Road Market team and other traders
  • Online promotion on the Chatsworth Road website, Facebook and Twitter

The market stalls used in the scheme, were produced by a local welder (which was a great way to contribute to the local economy). In addition to the results above, at least six market traders (outside of the programme) went on to open shops including London Borough of JamProper OldTriangle and Isle of Olive, who all started at Chatsworth Road market start up programme and are still actively trading.

Custom Field

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet

Business Support, High streets, Markets, Start-ups