I am writing in response to a letter from Billy Carter, Bear Street, Nayland (Free Press, March 21) regarding the Nayland Farmers’ Market and Transition Nayland.
I was disappointed by many of the comments which were both inflammatory and inaccurate.
Transition Nayland was not involved in organising the farmers’ market, but did help publicise the event on the basis that the vendors are all local traders working hard trying to make a living out of selling high-quality, locally produced products.
Transition Nayland strongly supports local shops and urges local people to support them as much as possible – our stance being “use them or lose them”. We feel that the biggest threat to local shops is the supermarkets, not the farmers’ markets.
Following the farmers’ market, I took the liberty of polling the local shops to get their views on its impact.
All three food shops in Nayland said that their trade had not been damaged by the farmers’ market.
Interestingly, Ivan Kerridge, the owner of Kerridge’s Butchers, said that he had noticed an increase in trade as a result of more people being in the village that day and that he is happy to see the farmers’ market in the village.
Rachel, from Forget-Me-Not, said that she had noticed no difference in trade that day and welcomed the market to the village.
This trend has been seen at other locations where farmers’ markets are held.
If people really want to help their local shops, then fewer trips to the supermarkets, and more trips to your local shop is the way forward.
Not only does this make the shops more viable, but money being spent with local businesses adds significantly to the local economy.
Mr Carter’s comments about Transition Nayland scrounging money from local people and organisations are completely unfounded – Transition Nayland has put in a huge amount of voluntary hours into the local community and has benefited only from two grants to support local allotment fencing and to help set up Green Energy Nayland which put solar panels on the local school roof saving the school significant money on its electricity bills.
If you would like to find out more about what Transition is all about, go to our website at www.transitionnayland.co.uk.