Page 7 - MarketTimesApril2016
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  Jade Banks, pictured with her partner Nathan Small, runs Maggie’s Confectionery, a Blackheath market business that was once was run by her nan and granddad
  Dave Sewell moved onto Blackheath Market a year ago because he thought it would be an ideal market for his frozen food business, Dave’s Deals
Michael Cooper is the longest serving trader on Blackheath market. He has been selling shoes here for 35 years
“The market works well and always has done,” Tony said. “We were lucky to have a trader called Clifford Salt who sold ladies underwear. He had been in the RAF and was good with figures and administration, so he took on the company secretary role,” he added.
“But the traders outside were struggling through the winters in the freezing cold and the board felt that everyone would do better if it was all under one roof.”
A £200,000 investment created today’s spacious market which is in the retail heart of this small, old-fashioned Black Country town near Birmingham and Wolverhampton.
Market manager Oliver Watchorn, whose father, David, is a director and shareholder, said: “We have 62 stalls here. We have one vacant stall at the moment but we have several traders wanting it.”
Oliver believes Blackheath is a natural market town. “We are ‘Yam Yams’ here, not ‘Brummies’,” said Oliver. Apparently Brummies call people from the Black Country Yam Yams because of the way they pronounce ‘You are’ as ‘Yow am’ or ‘Yow’m’.
The prevailing view is that Yam Yams are loyal, down-to-earth people who like the traditional feel and friendliness of markets.
But not many Black Country markets are doing as well as Blackheath.
Tony’s son Mark, who runs the large hardware and household goods stall started by his grandfather, Fred, said: “The extension was a big investment, but it has proved a wise one.”
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