Category Archives: Market Place

Abingdon Healthfest 2021


Dave Butterworth, and colleagues from Healthy Abingdon, organised the Abingdon Healthfest on Abingdon Market Place. There were thirteen stalls with different community groups. The event was sponsored by Penlon, the Abingdon company that makes lots of important equipment for the health sector.

One of Abingdon’s Guild of Town Criers was there to announce the events. He also did a cry from on top of the County Hall roof.

The Mayor of Abingdon-on-Thames, Cllr Cheryl Briggs, spoke to a lot of the stalls.

A fire engine from the Abingdon Fire Station was on display. The fire service were promoting Bikeability (cycle training).

Last weekend I showed Mr. Busby and his Beekeeping business. This week he was there on the Abingdon Free Wheelers cycle stand. They have a calendar of weekly rides for all abilities.

Abingdon Athletics Club has coaching sessions on track and road running. Look at Abingdon Athletic Club to find out more.

Dementia Friendly Abingdon aim to make the town more supportive of people affected by dementia, and their carers.

Other groups included:
* Active Communities
* Abingdon Parkrun
* Community Dental Service
* Leisure / Tennis Centre
* Shed Oxford
* Talking Space Plus were giving out stress balls. If a stress ball is not enough, they also have videos and material to help and can arrange free talking therapies.

Abingdon Abbey Buildings re-open + Local Excellence Market

Abingdon Abbey Buildings Reopen
Bryan and Tim were letting people know that the Abbey Buildings have reopened and had a special open day.

Bryan has been working hard on the lottery bid to improve access to the Abbey Buildings. The Town Council have given a grant of £25k towards the project.

Tim has been curator for 4 years and is returning to the USA next week. There is an interview with him in the video at the end of this post. Also in the video are Abingdon Traditional Morris Dancers, and Oxford Waites.
Abingdon Abbey Buildings Reopen
The Abingdon Traditional Morris Dancers started under the County Hall.
Abingdon Abbey Buildings Reopen
They then made their way to the Abbey Buildings like Pied Pipers, leading the crowds.
Abingdon Abbey Buildings Reopen
In the garden at the Abbey Buildings was a beer tent and a cake stall. There was free ice cream for children.
Abingdon Abbey Buildings Reopen
Here are Bryan Brown, chairman of trustees of the Abbey Buildings Trust; Cheryl Briggs, The Mayor of Abingdon-on-Thames; and the Town Crier.
Abingdon Abbey Buildings Reopen
Members of the Studio Theatre Club were near the Unicorn Theatre where they will be performing Terry Pratchett’s Murder In Ankh-morpork from 17th-20th November. (16th November 2021 marks 50 years of Terry as a published author.) Tickets go on sale on 14th September. They will go as fast as tickets to the Truck Festival.
Abingdon Abbey Buildings Reopen
Performing in the Long Gallery were the Oxford Waites.
Abingdon Abbey Buildings Reopen
On the Markey Place was the first Local Excellence Market since legal Covid-19 restrictions were lifted.
Abingdon Abbey Buildings Reopen
The Love Beer brewery, from nearby Milton, had a stall for the first time.
Abingdon Abbey Buildings Reopen
Martin Wackenier also had a  stall and sold over 20 of his 2022 Abingdon-on-Thames Calendars. Martin has just won the award for best photographer in Bucks and Oxfordshire in the Muddy Stilettos Awards 2021. Other Abingdon winners were The Tipsy Mercer (for best Bar), and Mostly Books (for best Bookshop). 3 winners is better than any other place.

Monday Market on Freedom to Choose Day


Since the start of June there has been a new grocer, with dried goods, at the Monday Market in Abingdon.

My wife thinks there is less packaging at the market than supermarkets and so we try to buy vegetables on Monday.

This Monday there were no longer stewards to help control social distancing.

The Isla Jane Bakery looked colourful as did the flowers stall. Today’s heat made some of the flowers wilt.

I felt a bit more self conscious about wearing a mask than usual. I asked one shop keeper whether she had to wear a mask. She said it was left up to her to decide but she thought mask wearing was still the right thing to do with the large increase in infections.

At the library there was nobody outside the door anymore. The track and trace box and QR code had been moved inside the library and is a matter of personal choice. The government is advising that masks should still be worn in crowded public spaces, but the library was not crowded. So some people had chosen not to wear a mask. It is an individual choice now there is no legal requirement.

From the Farmers Market to browsing books


The Farmers Market was on the Market Place in Abingdon today.

It was my first time inside both independent bookshops since the reopening. The Book store is in Bury Street precinct.

Two shops have closed in Bury Street during the shutdown. The Gift Centre has closed – probably deciding not to renew a lengthy lease. Also Peacocks went into administration and is now closed.  200 of the 400 Peacock stores will be re-opening as the chain have been brought out out administration. I don’t know about the Abingdon shop.

Mostly Books were also open. On display there is Trinity by Frank Close. Trinity was the code name for exploding the test atomic bomb in 1945. This well researched story is about Klaus Fuchs, a communist sympathiser, who passed atomic secrets to the Soviets during the race for development of the nuclear bomb. The book has both spying and science.

The library is also open and there I saw another book by Frank Close called Neutrino. Frank Close is a nuclear physicist who lives in Abingdon and often helps at the ATOM Science festival