Bright future for beloved market

People who love Queen Victoria Market are providing expert advice on the historic market’s strategic operations and the $250 million renewal program desperately needed to secure its future.

Chaired by Lord Mayor Sally Capp, the Committee of Trustees’ 13 members include market traders, community representatives, independent nominees and councillors.

The group provides early-stage advice on key issues including health and safety, the delivery of onsite storage through renewal, shed restoration planning, leases, licenses and the public realm.

The committee was established in 2018 to give traders, customers and community representatives a greater voice in the market renewal program and the future direction of Queen Victoria Market at a critical time for the 141-year-old market.

We invited Jed Macartney, a community member, and Fleur Studd, Director of Market Lane Coffee, to share a little about their roles on the committee, and their vision for the market.

What do you love about Queen Victoria Market?
Jed: I love the diversity of the market – the way you can use it for your everyday shopping for food and also for those one-off treats or trinkets that you might only purchase once a year. I love taking visitors there.

Fleur: We love being part of something that is so unique to Melbourne, something that represents great food and hospitality and brings together so many communities, and has done for generations.

We love serving such a diverse mix of customers, from tourists who are visiting the market from all over the globe, to our customers who travel from near and far to do their weekly shop. We love being part of their ritual and market experience.

We also love being part of a committed, passionate and culturally diverse community of traders, all of whom make the market an exciting and energising place to visit.

How is the Committee of Trustees helping shape the market’s future?
Jed: The committee is helping the City of Melbourne consult closely with key stakeholders – including stall holders, the general public and Traditional Owners – to add ideas and ensure that a wide range of views and opinions are considered as the plan is developed.

It also allows some ideas from ‘left field’ to be considered that may not have otherwise have surfaced.

Fleur: We are here to support both the City of Melbourne and Queen Victoria Market as they navigate the renewal program and set the strategic direction for the future of the market.

The diversity of the panel means that various perspectives can be taken into consideration on significant strategic issues.

There is healthy debate but ultimately everyone in the room wants the market to continue to thrive and remain relevant in the decades to come; we want to ensure that the essence of what makes the market so special is not lost.

What is your ultimate vision for the future of the market?
Jed: I would like to see the market as a place where both locals and visitors can enjoy use of the facilities and the services of the traders – a place where tourists might visit because of its unique nature and where locals and city workers might go for lunch, their evening shopping or a meal and entertainment.

Fleur: I would love the Queen Victoria Market to continue as a vibrant, authentic and essential part of our city that is loved by our generation, and the generations that follow.

I want it to be a destination for locals and tourists to buy, taste and experience the very best that Melbourne and Victoria has to offer. And I hope that it can do all this with sustainability as a key value.

Anything else you would like to mention?
Jed: I have really enjoyed the Committee of Trustees process. The people involved are all passionate about the market and committed to its future, the meetings are well run and the administration is excellent.  A very good process all round.

Fleur: I am excited and extremely positive about the future for Queen Victoria Market. A lot of time, resources, and money have been invested in ensuring that the market has the strategy and supporting infrastructure to serve its customers into the future.

At the same time, great care is being taken to ensure that the things that define the market – its rich cultural heritage, sense of place, people and connection to community – are preserved and enhanced in the process.

About the Committee of Trustees
We created the committee to give traders, customers and the community a greater voice in the renewal and strategic operations of the Queen Victoria Market. It is chaired by the Lord Mayor and made up of 13 members.

The purpose of the committee is to ensure a broad range of views are considered and to advise Council on important matters related to the renewal and strategic operations of Queen Victoria Market.

Committee of Trustees meeting summaries are available on the City of Melbourne website.

To find out more, visit Queen Victoria Market Precinct Renewal Program.