EDITORIAL: We should support Jacky White’s Market and Stop Belittling it

Earlier this week when the news broke that Daleks would be paying a visit to Jacky White’s Market in the Bridges, some reacted on Facebook with ridicule and negative comments about the venue, as if it were to be treated with contempt and avoided. This prompted stall owners, including “The Retro Room” to defend it.

Why is there so much disdain for Jacky White’s? While it may be far from being luxury or high class, it is easy to forget that this is our city’s very own historic and traditional market place which occupies a central role in our local culture. Jacky White’s Market as an organisation is in fact nearing 100 years old, and is an icon of local life.

In occupying that role, Jacky White’s is all about local businesses, local traders and local jobs. Supporting a venue like this is one of the best ways to put money into our city, which goes to local people and not big corporations or supermarkets. Let us not forget that because of these factors, traditional markets are a dying breed. The little man is being squeezed out by big superstores, to the point local traders have been in decline for decades.

Jacky White’s should therefore be revered because it is a hallmark of Sunderland’s working class culture and a bond between generations. Rather than mocking it we should be doing everything we can to support this kind of place. If we think we are too good or above shopping there we are turning our backs on who we are. There is strength in simplicity.

Jacky White’s Market is a great Sunderland institution. May it long live and may we help it thrive. Support traditional shopping, support local businesses and Sunderland culture.