ARTISAN goods, street food and busking will be coming to Gillingham’s High Street this weekend, with its launch of the White Hart Market.

Organised by the town team and the Anonymous Travelling Market, this new monthly event aims to bring more people and traders to the town and “bring some life back into the High Street”.

This market is part of the town team’s vision for Gillingham, which aims to add more to and improve the area, celebrate and promote what is already there, and entice holidaymakers to choose Gillingham.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic organisers will be implementing health and safety measures including hand sanitising points, a ‘track and trace’ system and a one-way route around the site.

Steve Dauwalder, operations manager for the Anonymous Travelling Market, said: “Outdoor markets are showing a surge of popularity again and the Covid-19 pandemic makes people feel much more comfortable when shopping outdoors.”

He added: “[I am] pleased to see the encouragement provided by the town team, shop owners, local residents and a number of town councillors whose support lays a good foundation for a new market.

“We are hoping to make this a regular monthly event from 2021.”

During the market, launching on Sunday from 9am, the High Street will be closed to traffic between School Lane and Barnaby Mead, diverted along Le Neubourg Way.

Heard during the Gillingham Town Council meeting on September 28, Councillor Mike Gould, who is a member of the town team, said he hopes for the event to be “successful”.

He added: “I’m hopeful that this activity will be an ongoing one and it will capitalise on its success by bringing other traders to the town and bringing some life back into the High Street which is sadly missing at the moment.”

Cllr Gould added that the market will not be going ahead in November as there are plans for a potential remembrance ceremony, but the market organisers will be donating £100 to the Royal British Legion as a gesture of respect.

The following market, a Christmas-themed version, will be taking place on December 12.

Heard during the meeting Cllr Val Pothecary said: “I want to congratulate Cllr Gould and the town team for all its hard work.

“It’s really exciting to think we’ve got a proper market happening on a Sunday, I do wish it every success.”