‘Greens’ vendors say business now brighter –since relocating from outside ‘Bedford’
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The old Bedford School at Bourda and Robb Streets
The old Bedford School at Bourda and Robb Streets

 

FOLLOWING their relocation from outside the old Bedford Methodist School on Bourda and Robb Streets, many vendors who were initially reluctant to leave are now singing a different tune.

Currently accommodated on Orange Walk, they are now saying they are doing even better than before in terms of sales.

Meanwhile, work on the demolition of the school, which is what caused the standoff between vendors and the Mayor and City Council (M&CC) in the first place, is moving apace, in that one section of the aged wooden building has already been torn down, without incident. The remainder of the structure is reportedly expected to be completely dismantled within a matter of weeks.

According to M&CC Public Relations Officer, Debra Lewis, when work first started on the demolition exercise, they encountered a number of old records, in the form of files, which were stored in the school for many years.

She said approval has since been granted the Council for the removal of the documents, after which the entire building will be taken down, piece by piece.

Lewis said the front part of the rickety building has been demolished, and they have to also remove piles of garbage from inside the structure and its environs, since vendors once used the place as a garbage dump of sorts.

She stated that the entire building will be taken apart and removed completely within weeks. She added that it is a painstaking exercise, but it will rid the place of refuse.

Lewis said that scores of vendors who used to ply their trade in the vicinity of the old Bedford building have since been relocated to a section of Orange Walk, Bourda, after weeks of negotiations.

Some weeks ago, M&CC employees and the vendors had clashed, after they refused to vacate the area; but their stalls were dismantled and removed despite their protests.

Lewis explained that once the building has been demolished, removed and the place cleared of garbage, the vendors will be allowed to occupy their usual space but until such time they have been relocated.

However, those vendors who spoke to this newspaper said business is brisk as usual, and that they are actually getting more sales than at their previous location, although some of them were a bit hesitant to relocate.

One woman said that the spot she is at now is better, and she is adjusting, and that the sale of vegetables has even picked up somewhat. Others said they, too, have noticed a significant increase in sales, and are now willing to collaborate with the M&CC on the way forward.
They said further that despite the shortcomings, they will continue to keep their environment clean and do their part in the correct removal and disposal of garbage after vending.

Some of the vendors admitted that their removal and relocation had been difficult to adjust to but things seem to be going well for them now. However, some of them intend to return to Bourda when the time is right. (Michel Outridge)

 

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