Page 22 - MarketTimesDecember2019
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22 MARKET TIMES • DECEMBER 2019 The architects behind eye-catching
retail market transformations
Greig & Stephenson’s impression of how the new market in Darley Street will look. Demolition of the old Marks and Spencer store began last month to make way for the development
THE architects behind market transformations from the iconic Borough Market in London to the redevelopment of Leicester’s markets follow a simple philosophy.
Success is not measured in architectural awards or accolades. It is all about working with what is there and building and regenerating markets to reflect local heritage and to create vibrancy that works for traders and shoppers alike.
London-based Greig & Stephenson, celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, began as a specialist in retail, shopping centres and food and drink both in the UK and abroad.
Then the firm won the contract to upgrade the famous Edwardian front section of Kirkgate Market in Leeds, where Marks and Spencer first set up stall in the earlier Victorian section.
The regeneration was such a success that the market was re-
Adam Parker
designated as Grade I listed from Grade II.
Following that recognition the architects entered a competition run by RIBA ( Royal Institute of British Architects) to redevelop Borough wholesale market in London, and they won it.
Adam Parker, a director of the business, explained that at the time it was a tired and dilapidated wholesale market where a handful of enterprising food and produce businesses had started a retail market.
“A lot of the structure was in disrepair and a railway viaduct had to be moved,” he said.
They reconfigured the space to
allow a better flow of people, organised repairs and made best use of what was there.
They even tracked down the big portico from the old Floral Hall that had once stood in Covent Garden.
“It was in a scrapyard in Wales so we paid £1 for it and brought it to Borough Market, where it now looks as though it has always been,” he said.
The transformation they masterminded played a big part in the success of Borough Market, now a world famous fine food and drink emporium well established on the London tourist map.
Other market regenerations followed including Whitecross Street in London, Leicester and Wolverhampton, to the point where the firm became 100 per cent focused on markets.
Adam said that Leicester was a major project which included creating a new glass produce hall to replace an ageing market building.
This was followed by the redevelopment of the covered
The financial services crash of
2008 affected all sectors — including market development, but Adam said the positives were that new challenges like internet shopping had put the focus on saving towns and high streets.
‘We are all about
making markets
vibrant places
where traders do
well and shoppers
flock to, not just to
shop but to enjoy a
great experience’
Adam Parker,
Greig & Stephenson Architects
He says markets have begun to be recognised as key to creating vibrant shopping and community centres where people can eat, drink, meet and shop for great local produce from independent

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