Covent Garden ruling is welcomed Published: 21 June, 2006
DEFRA today welcomed the House of Lords’ decision to allow, for the
first time, face-to-face trading of meat and fish at New Covent
Garden Market, Nine Elms in central London.
The Lords’ decision overturns an earlier Court of Appeal ruling which
supported the Corporation of London’s Application for Judicial Review
of Defra’s decision to authorise such trading. The Corporation of
London’s Application for Judicial Review was initially rejected by
the High Court.
Jeff Rooker, Minister for Sustainable Farming and Food, said:
“We welcome the House of Lords’ decision today to allow tenants at
New Covent Garden Market to trade face-to-face with buyers
in meat and fish as well as fruit, vegetables and flowers.”
“Now, for the first time, customers will be able to meet all their
needs at a one-stop shop under one market roof.”
“This decision will help to support and sustain the market in the
years ahead because it takes into account the changing nature of the
demands placed upon it, especially from London’s restaurant and
“It remains the Government’s policy to disengage from its
involvement in the running of New Covent Garden Market,
as soon as the necessary arrangements can be made.
“But in doing so we will aim to secure arrangements that
maintain the Market as a going concern so that it is able to accommodate the businesses which are established there and develop for itself a viable and sustainable future.”
Legislation governing New Covent Garden Market
requires the consent of the Secretary of State
before trading in non-horticultural products, subject to
consideration of the circumstances of each case.
New Covent Garden Market is the leading wholesale market for fresh
fruit, vegetables and flowers and the leading centre for specialist
catering distributors in London. There are some 250 companies at the
site employing over 2,500 people. The Market’s annual total turnover
is over #500 million. For more information see