London mayor Sadiq Khan is hiring experts to boost street markets in the capital

 
Shruti Tripathi Chopra
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Sadiq Khan wants to boost street markets in London (Source: Getty)

London mayor Sadiq Khan is setting up a "markets board", the first of its kind in the capital, to help boost local businesses.

Khan is recruiting a team of industry experts and business leaders to support growth in high streets and town centres.

The London markets board will assist the mayor in coming up with a strategy to "support and promote the capital’s wholesale, street and covered markets".

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In London there are over 250 street markets, up from 162 in 2010.

Khan said:

I’m a proud Londoner and a proud Englishman who has grown up with traditional street markets. Markets are deeply woven into the tapestry of English culture and nowhere is that more true than here in London. They are far more than a place to do your shopping - they are places where people meet and talk.

I promised to be the most pro-business mayor that London has ever seen which is why, as we lead up to St. George’s Day, I have pledged not just to preserve and protect London’s markets but also to set up our very first London market board to help ensure that these spaces thrive for the benefit of local entrepreneurs, small businesses and everybody who visits them.

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The announcement comes a day after the mayor vowed to tackle pub closures in the capital. The number of London pubs has fallen by a quarter – an average loss of 81 pubs per year – in the last 15 years.

The decline of the number of pubs in the capital was blamed on issues including rises in business rates, conflicts with residents and developers and the relaxation of permitted development rights in 2015 – which allows certain types of development to go ahead without planning permission.