The origins of Abergavenny Farmers Market go back to 1998 or thereabouts when Monmouthshire Local Produce was formed by Stephen Shearman.
Having recently returned from the America, he had seen how the small scale farmers and artisan food producers sell direct to the consumer through Farmers Markets. Totally inspired, Stephen decided to set up something similar in Monmouthshire.
His original concept was to set up a series of markets in Usk, Abergavenny, Chepstow and Monmouth selling an abundance of local fresh produce. However, not coming from a food background, it took months of research before the first Monmouthshire Local Produce Market was launched in Llanishen, near Usk. Over the following months the market prospered .
Subsequently Monmouthshire County Council asked Stephen to help Margaret Whilding to do something similar in Abergavenny. Margaret was already a well established trader at the general market in the in the town’s Market Hall. As the council wanted to utilise the Market Hall as much as possible it seemed an ideal opportunity to hold Abergavenny’s Farmers market here.
In March 2000 Abergavenny held it’s first Farmers Market, with the 13 stallholders, selling meat and poultry, jams, eggs, apple juice, bread, plants. Some of the original stallholders such as G&R Tudge, Clams Cakes and Jill Lewis Perennial Plants still attend today.
Today we average around 20 stalls each month selling a variety essentials including vegetables, meat, poultry, bread, preserves and cheese to the more desirable treats such as cakes, patisserie, chocolates, sweets, olives and tapenades, flavoured oils and unusual herbs In addition we have a few artisan plantsman and craft stallholders selling plants, cut flowers, scarves and accessories and woodturned items.