New Covent Garden Market
Template:Use dmy dates Template:Use British English New Covent Garden Market is the largest wholesale fruit, vegetable and flower market in the UK. Located in Nine Elms between Vauxhall and Battersea, South West London, the Market covers a site of Template:Convert and is home to approximately 200 fruit, vegetable and flower companies.
The Market serves 40% of the fruit and vegetables eaten outside of the home in London and provides ingredients to many of London's top restaurants, hotels, schools, prisons, hospitals and catering businesses. The Flower Market, which offers an extensive range of flowers, plants, foliages, sundries and interior decorations from the UK and from around the globe, is visited by 75% of florists in London, many of whom place morning orders and return to restock during the day as needed.
The Market is open from 3am to 11am Monday to Friday and 4am to 10am on Saturdays.
There is a £5.00 entry fee for visitors driving to the Market, but once inside there is plenty of available parking.
The nearest London Underground station is Vauxhall on the Victoria Line. Vauxhall also has a railway station, with good connections to Waterloo and Clapham Junction and a large bus station with buses departing frequently to destinations all across London.
The proposed Nine Elms tube station on the Northern line extension to Battersea will serve the market.
The Market is run by a statutory corporation, the Covent Garden Market Authority (CGMA), which reports to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA). The CGMA was set up in 1961 and charged with modernising and overseeing the administration of the vegetable market, which was considered strategically important as a wholesale food and flower market.
The Market opened for the first time on 11 November 1974, construction having started in 1971 on the site of the former Nine Elms Locomotive Works. The Market is so called because it transferred directly from its previous location at Covent Garden in central London.
Since 1990 it has been the policy of successive governments to dispose of the market as a going concern. Following a report by PricewaterhouseCoopers in 2005, the CGMA and DEFRA agreed on a plan (known as Project Chrysalis) to reform and redevelop the market to enable it to be eventually sold. The CGMA, which had previously paid any profits as dividends to HM Treasury, was allowed to retain its profits to fund the initial planning work. On 7 January 2013, the CGMA signed a contract with Vinci and St. Modwen for the market's regeneration. Most of the redevelopment will be funded by releasing spare land to the developers to build residential properties, with the overall project worth £2 billion. Work is expected to start in 2015 and be complete by 2020, allowing the government to then disengage from the market.