Groundbreaking for Mercato Ilford

PUBLISHED: 07:00 14 November 2019

Concepts for Mercato Ilford. Picture: Mercato Metropolitano

Concepts for Mercato Ilford. Picture: Mercato Metropolitano


The groundbreaking of the new food market Mercato Ilford is set to begin on Monday (November 18) at the Redbridge Town Hall Car Park.

Concepts for Mercato Ilford. Picture: Mercato MetropolitanoConcepts for Mercato Ilford. Picture: Mercato Metropolitano

The covered community food market, part of the "Spark Ilford" scheme to regenerate Ilford town centre, was previously set to open this year but is now slated for Summer 2020.

The Redbridge council promised the project will generate over 100 new jobs, as the market takes over the 31,000 square foot open car park, in Oakfield Road.

Mercato Ilford is the third venture from Mercato Metropolitano (MM) following their successful 2016 launch in Elephant and Castle.

This month MM opened their latest market in a Grade I-listed former church in Mayfair, following a two-year £5 million restoration.

Elephant and Castle MM. Picture: Mercato Metropolitano
Elephant and Castle MM. Picture: Mercato Metropolitano

The state of the art Mercato Ilford promises to be the first example in the UK of a circular-economy community food market, with a fully functional urban farm on the rooftop, which will produce herbs and vegetables for the restauranteurs and retailers downstairs.

You may also want to watch:

Chief Operating Officer of MM Amedeo Claris said: "With Mercato Ilford, we want to demonstrate that with an inclusive, collaborative and balanced business model, true food artisans, urban farmers and community-focused offerings can become financially viable businesses, despite high real estate costs and the rising of business rates in the UK."

The market will also convert organic waste into energy, heating and compost for the farm.

Elephant and Castle MM. Picture: Mercato Metropolitano
Elephant and Castle MM. Picture: Mercato Metropolitano

It will include communal seating for 600 people and space for 30 stalls, including a low-packaging grocery store, as well as a fully-fitted German

craft brewery, which will produce mineral water on-site, using a filtration system that will make briny sea water drinkable.

A council spokesperson said: "The covered community market will bring MM's exciting food and drink offering to the area, providing healthy good food, community spirit and entrepreneurial opportunities as well as an array of community events including cookery classes, community lunches and school holiday clubs."

The project is being part-funded by the Mayor for London's Good Growth fund, which will create new jobs and enterprise opportunities for local residents.

MM are working in partnership with the council's Work Redbridge team to advertise key job roles for the new food market.

If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Ilford Recorder. Click the link in the orange box above for details.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Latest from the Ilford Recorder