Over the next few posts I will feature recordings of various markets I have visited around the world. I find markets sonically very rich, mainly due to the number of people concentrated in one place. When travelling, local accents and dialects make the soundscape all the more interesting to foreign ears, another reason I love to record these type of soundscapes. However, for the first market recording in the series I thought I’d feature a market that is much closer to home – Columbia Road Flower Market in London’s East-End.
I spent many years living in this area of London and have fond memories of the locals, particularly those with strong “cockney” accents. Columbia Road is a road of Victorian shops off the Hackney Road in the London Borough of Tower Hamlets. It was originally established in 1869 as a covered food market but from the 1960s the market enjoyed a new resurgence with the increasing popularity of gardening programmes. Today the market is in operation every Sunday from 8 am to 2 pm with traders selling a wide range of plants, bedding plants, shrubs, bulbs and freshly cut flowers.
Photo credit : Aurelien Guichard