Update: this stall has ceased trading May 2017
Ex journalist Mike Summers has opened “Mike’s Jewellery” in the market, one of a group of new traders who have boosted the market in recent weeks.
Mike previously traded in Ellesmere Port for 8 years before selling his business in October of last year. “I just fancied a change. I started off on a stall there. I went onto two stalls and then we went onto a unit. I built up a good customer base there and I enjoyed my time in the Port” He took some time off and identified Chester has having “lots of potential”.
“I really like the layout of Chester market, I like that its still a traditional market ..I found with Ellesmere Port was , once the new one was built , they changed it that much, it was all units. People weren’t looking around the market. In Chester people do tend to walk along the aisles like a traditional market. ”
As well as costume jewellery, Mike sells hand crafted wooden ornaments with prices from a pound upwards. He says that the new traders including neighbouring stall , Bookingham Palace as well as the cupcake stall and forthcoming deli are creating a lot of positive vibes.
“It’s looking really full, a lot of stores coming in with a great positive attitude. It is still a good market , I know its gone down a bit, but we have to get the message out there, and encourage people to come back to the market”
Book Trader Richard Newton commented “I was handing out bookmarks outside the market and a woman said to me that the last time she came here was 3 years ago and it was quite dead so she didn’t come back in again. I mentioned the cake stall was opening, we were opening, the deli was opening and she went “I’ll come in, I didn’t even know it was still going!” We can change the mindset of people like this and turn things around!”
Of his previous career, Mike reveals that he rose to the position of Chief Reporter of the Evening leader. He started a a junior reporter and worked his way the ladder, before his decision to move into the jewellery trade. Working out of the office on Watergate street, which the newspaper still occupies today, he recalls covering the Shell Oil strikes as well as interviews with John Prescott and Tony Robinson, during Christine Russell’s election campaign. He says that the long running Northgate development saga was in its infancy back then.
“We did a lot of stories on it originally.. it’s great to see it finally come to fruition.” He is enthusiastic about the plans, with the scheme including a new market hall and cinema on the site of the current bus station .
“I think its going to be great. I would love to be in the new market I think it will revitalise the whole of the town centre and bring lots of people in ” The market is a “nice environment to work and shop in. We have some great new people and ideas. Great quality items and low prices!”
Mike’s Jewellery trade Mon- Sat 9-4.30