Tavistock Pannier Market

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Behind the Town Hall and just off the bustling high street lies a shopper’s paradise and one of Tavistock’s hidden gems. This historic Pannier Market, surrounded by delightful independent shops and cafes invites visitors to step inside the Market building to discover a diverse array of traders, artists, and craftsmen offering  quality goods at competitive prices.

Tavistock received its Market Charter from Henry I in 1105, and the town thrived on its weekly markets, serving as the hub of a large farming district. Initially held in nearby Bank Square, the market relocated in 1860 when the Seventh Duke of Bedford diverted the River Tavy and constructed the magnificent Market Hall surrounded by charming shops. Imagine the scenes of bustling activity, much like the modern supermarkets today. But, instead of shopping carts and cars, horses, donkeys, and ponies with baskets tethered to rings within the building were a common sight. Villagers and townsfolk flocked to the market every Friday, some arriving by horse-drawn carts and carriages, while others walked.

Over 150 years later, as shopping habits evolved and many markets faded away, Tavistock Pannier Market embraced change and transformed beyond recognition. Today, visitors are greeted with a vibrant and diverse selection of goods spanning an incredible spectrum.

The Market opens every day from Tuesday to Saturday, with additional opening on Mondays during the summer holidays. A variety of artisans and traders, ranging from photographers and potters to clothiers and furniture-makers, offer their wares. The Market also hosts a number of permanent stalls selling everything from books and pet food to cakes and fashion jewellery.

Daily themes dictate the Market’s offerings, with craft, antiques, collectibles, and mixed markets featured throughout the week. Foodies will delight in the selection of specialty stalls and cafes offering freshly prepared local fare, both indoors and alfresco.

As the Market flourished, so did the surrounding shops, now offering a broader appeal to a wider audience. From quality butchers to traditional barbers, cheese shops to specialty gifts, there’s something for everyone.

Special events, including pre-Christmas markets, charity events, and fairs, add to the Market’s charm. Combined with an award-winning Farmers’ Market twice a month, there’s always something to explore and enjoy in Tavistock, where a warm welcome awaits visitors.