Grainger Market Volunteers to Support Delivery Efforts
The Grainger Market’s new online delivery service, graingerdelivery.com has been hugely successful since its launch on 26 March delivering essential supplies to households across the city. Organisers are now welcoming help from volunteers to meet the demand for orders.
A number of traders recognised that they needed to start to deliver goods direct to customers in their homes in light of the Coronavirus and they needed to act fast.
Market traders, led by Emma Claude Phillips of the French Oven bakery, with support from her father, John Philips, who operates the market’s popular Oliver’s Café and chairs the Grainger Market traders group, responded immediately to the crisis teaming up with traders to launch an online ordering and delivery system for the market.
Within days, the service was inundated and John contacted NE1 Ltd (BID district company for Newcastle City Centre) and Newcastle city council to mobilise additional resources.
Newcastle City Council and NE1 responded quickly with the council allocating drivers and vehicles from Parking Services, and NE1 redeploying their Street Rangers and Clean Team to help with the administration and fulfilment of orders.
Grainger Delivery was born, offering a range of products from a number of the market’s popular food traders. All the market’s meat, fruit, veg, and fish suppliers are now on board and they are making upwards of 300 deliveries per day. With a minimum order of £20 and a £3 service charge payable via Paypal orders are then delivered direct to customers.
The delivery service is available 6 days a week Monday – Saturday via www.graingermarketdelivery.com.
The service covers postcodes NE1 NE2 NE3 NE4 NE5 NE6 NE7 NE8 NE9 NE10 NE11 NE12 NE12 NE28 NE29.
Due to high demand, deliveries will take between 1 and 5 days.
Teams of volunteers are now needed to pick and pack the goods and prepare them for delivery.
The Market has successfully recruited teams of volunteers to work shifts to keep the delivery service operating throughout the current crisis. Anyone interested in offering their services should contact: [email protected]
John Phillips, Grainger Market Traders Chair said:
“This has been a real example of collaborative working at its best. My daughter came up with the idea and with the help of among others, the actor Craig Wilde, got the online system up and running in a matter of days. The crisis has seen a shift in customer buying habits and attitudes, people want and need to shop locally, they are happy to get the food that is available and take ‘pot luck’ with fruit and veg orders. There has even been excitement from customers about the element of surprise that comes with receiving their order.
“Hopefully when we come through this crisis, the experience will restore the balance and we will see a return to traditional consumer values; shop local, shop seasonally and with little plastic. These values were central to the market when it was first built in 1835. With the new delivery service there has been little to no plastic used and all the delivery boxes have been recycled from the fruit and veg stores. We have had great support from NE1 and the Council and are looking forward to honing the system to make improvements as we continue.”
Mark Sumner, NE1 Retail Core Manager has been working closely with the Grainger Market traders and the council to get the delivery service up and running, even directing some of NE1’s Street Ranger team to help at the Market and organise deliveries. Mark said: “These are unprecedented times, the Grainger Market has never offered such a comprehensive delivery service in its 185-year history but necessity is the mother of all invention and people need the supplies that the market can deliver. Traders are keen to do their bit to help deliver supplies to families who need doorstep deliveries and we have been delighted by the number of people who have volunteered to help.”
“One of the legacies we hope will come from this crisis is a spirit of localism where people will continue to shop locally and support local businesses who are helping them weather this storm. There’s a great team spirit and we urge anyone who can spare the time to get in touch and volunteer so that they can be part of this amazing effort.”
Councillor Ged Bell, Newcastle City Council cabinet member for employment and culture said;
“The Grainger Market traders have stepped up to the challenges that the coronavirus crisis has created across the city, they are showing first-hand the value of our independent businesses.
‘Their work so far has been incredibly important to people in our city. Providing fresh food and essential items to vulnerable residents and offering locally sourced, high-quality produce to those who can visit the historic market.
“The Grainger Market is one of the icons of our city centre. The grit and determination of its traders along with the superb volunteers and support from the city council staff is testament to the collective spirit our city is showing throughout these difficult times.