New look for Beckley Park Market

November 17, 2022 BY

An expanded focus on local produce is promised for the market. Photos: SUPPLIED

THE new managers of Beckley Park Markets have announced a “makeover” for the 40-year-old Geelong institution, with a December relaunch designed to inject new life and variety into the event.

Last Saturday was the first time the weekly gathering was run by Urban Markets after taking over from the Geelong Greyhound Racing Club, and its staff spent the day meeting with stallholders and outlining pending changes to the way things will be run in the future.

The group’s manager Felicity Ashman said a considerable amount of work is needed “to bring it up to scratch” and the first month of November will largely involve behind the scenes compliance work.

“This first month of November all we’re doing is just keeping it at status quo while we sort out the insurances and documentation from stallholders… there’s been no documentation of who people are, even people who’ve been coming for 20 or 30 years,” she said.

“It’s a lot of background work for the next four weeks to tidy it up and then we can really start working on improving it from there.”
Ms Ashman said the market would still feature the staple stalls of the past but will be more clearly defined under three sections of artisan wares, local produce and food; car boot sales; and trash and treasure.

“You can still bring your trash and treasure, no problem, and car boot sellers don’t have to have insurance, we’ve got that covered, but they’ll have to pay for it. So instead of being a $15 entry it will be a $35 entry and that covers their insurance as well.

“We want it to be far more organised, we want to make it more family-friendly, more activities happening through the market… to bring back the vibrancy that it used to have.”

A key focus of the new managers will also be expanding the range of people who come through the gates, and where they come from.

“It’s my job to change the demographic of those attending… and to get it on to the tourist trail as well,” Ms Ashman said.
“The market has to move and change with the times, so it can survive.”

Existing Beckley Park tenants will also be brought into the market. The Geelong Pool Club will open its café there and host beginner sessions for children.

“It’s important to have interaction with the groups on the ground,” Ms Ashman said.

“The aim is to inject welcome funds into the local community and support the talented artists and producers of the region.”

The market will officially relaunch on December 3.

For more information, head to urbanmarkets.com.au