In a statement released last week, the company said it had filed a framework application with the London borough of Barking and Dagenham to create a new home for the Billingsgate, New Spitalfields and Smithfield markets in East London.
The proposals envisage that the Part II listed Smithfield meat market, the only one of the three remaining in central London, will be relocated from its existing location in Farringdon.
The Billingsgate fish and New Spitalfields fruit and vegetable markets would be relocated from their current locations in Poplar and Hackney, respectively.
As part of the plans, the three historic markets would be relocated to the planned location at Dagenham Dock, the former location of the Barking Reach power station.
The company said the move would secure the future of the three markets and bring new jobs and businesses to an industrial site that has been abandoned since the power plant closed in 2014.
The application seeks approval for the demolition of the remaining existing buildings on the site and the development of a “consolidated” wholesale market, including market areas, logistics, distribution, food preparation areas, storage and secondary uses.
The plans also see the establishment of a new “food school” aimed at training “the market traders, butchers, fishmongers and fruit traders of tomorrow,” the company said.
The new location at Dagenham Dock would allow the new market to take advantage of the nearby rail network and the Thames for the transfer of goods and products to ease pressure on the A13, the company said.
The company’s Markets Co-Location program was officially announced in 2018, and the agency has announced that it will open the new market by 2025/26.
Pat Hayes, CEO of Barking and Dagenham Council Be First said, “The plans to move the markets support our drive to transform Dagenham Dock into a state-of-the-art business park and build on the region’s impressive rail and port infrastructure to create a key growth hub for the Thames Estuary. “