Sunday 29 April 2012

Editorial : Traders Speaking Out

Traders have not always shown a strong interest in determining their future at the Queen Victoria Market but there are signs of change.
The recent article on grouping stalls has broken records for readership on this website and the response from traders was certainly very strong. Most of the comments were against grouping but even the more extreme responses made some very valid points and added to the debate.
Why do we need to debate these issues? We are in a time of significant change for retailing. The global financial crisis and subsequent events have created a new consumerism with severe impact  on retailer’s incomes. The Lord Mayor of Melbourne has seen fit to engage traders directly to help ensure that the Queen Victoria Market recovers lost ground and moves forward as a strong retail entity. In the UK, a dramatic drop in the fortunes of markets and High St. shops resulted in a recent parliamentary enquiry with far reaching implications (see separate post).
The point is that we are in a time of change and change requires action. Change and action cannot be allowed to run rampant. They require careful considered responses and if the comments on this website are any guide, QVM traders seem to be moving to more “considered” views. Good healthy debate is a big plus for us as we move forward and contribute to solutions.