Gallery: Kindred Spirits - do you remember the produce market held weekly at the Ipswich Corn Exchange?

Brisk trading at the Corn Exchange in November 1970. (Photo Jerry Turner/Archant)

Brisk trading at the Corn Exchange in November 1970. (Photo Jerry Turner/Archant)

A popular feature of the Ipswich town centre for decades was the produce market in the Corn Exchange, writes David Kindred.

The Corn Exchange was formally opened July 26, 1882 and for 90 years served a place where corn was traded.The Tuesday corn markets were busy events with farmers bringing grain for inspection and trade with merchants. Better communications saw the decline in this form of trading and the last corn market was on June 20, 1972. The fruit and vegetable market had moved from a site off Falcon Street to the Corn Exchange in August 1888.

The last provisions market was held November 12, 1970 and the market was moved, with much protest, to the Greyfriars development. Traders set stalls on the Cornhill in protest, but these were removed by council workmen.

The Corn Exchange was converted to an entertainment and events complex, opening in 1975. Many attempts to draw shoppers to the Greyfriars site in Princes Street site failed and the market was moved in 1977 to Crown Street on a site formally occupied by Egerton’s garage, which had been there since 1928. It was also on the site cleared by the demolition of Tower Ramparts School, now the site of the Tower Ramparts Shopping Centre. The market moved from there, when Crown Pools was built, to the car park near the now demolished Civic Centre where it was for more than 18 years. The market moved to the Cornhill, where it is held now and where traders had operated from the very early years of the town’s history.

Now there is speculation that the market will move again to the Queen Street area.

Do you remember the fruit and vegetable markets in the Corn Exchange or at any of the other sites? Share your memories with David Kindred

See more from David Kindred here

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