One of Chester’s most popular market stallholders has celebrated the opening of his new premises. Kevin Williams, owner of The Cheese Wedge has relocated to a new shop, on Goss Street off Watergate Street, heralding his departure from Chester Market after 44 years. The Cheese Wedge’s application for the new market was rejected by the council last year, and although encouraged to reapply, Kevin decided to move telling local media he felt “betrayed and upset”.
Surrounded by a large crowd of well-wishers made up of family, friends and regular customers, Kevin held a grand opening ceremony, cutting the ribbon at his new premises located at 1 Goss St, assisted by staff member Dan Riley and accompanied by some of his youngest customers.
During the final two years of his tenure at Chester Market, Kevin and his team, along with the staff at David Joinson Quality Meats and Ian’s 5 A Day were hailed as local heroes as they joined forces to provide deliveries of fresh produce from their stalls to customers who were vulnerable or shielding during the Pandemic.
Speaking about leaving the Market and opening his new shop, Kevin, who recently won Best Chester Market Trader for 2021 in the Chester Bid Customer Service awards, an accolade voted for by Chester residents said “It feels strange not being in the Market and I’ll certainly miss the camaraderie and banter amongst the remaining stall holders having been there for so long but I’m sure I’ll settle in at the new shop in the coming weeks. It’s been great to see so many regulars coming to see us today to wish us well and to also be joined by family and friends for our grand opening. Its been a fantastic day, we couldn’t be more pleased.”
The new shop features a smart, contemporary interior and cheese fans can find all their favourites being stocked alongside Kevin’s popular and extensive range of products including chutneys, pickles and free-range eggs.
Moving to the new premises will enable Kevin and his team to hold regular events including cheese and wine tastings and he already has plans in place for a cheese and beer tasting to celebrate Saint Patrick’s Day with a selection of Irish ales and cheese on offer. Kevin said “Whilst we had hoped to have been a part of the new Market, everything happens for a reason, the new shop has worked out well and gives us the scope to hold regular tasting events and collaborations with other local independent retailers, we’re really excited about the future and we’re looking forward to seeing what other new opportunities having the shop will open up for us.”
Words & Pictures: Paul Crofts