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More sellers than buyers - Linstead residents say they don't have money to spend at Grand Market

Published:Wednesday | December 21, 2016 | 12:00 AMRuddy Mathison
The entrance to Linstead Market, which is expected to be flooded with sellers on Christmas Eve for the annual grand market.

LINSTEAD, St Catherine:

The customary buzz associated with the annual Linstead grand market is expected to be absent this year.

This as residents of Linstead say this year's grand market, scheduled for Saturday, December 24, will not see the usual participation from the public because of limited spending power.

Gary Richards, a resident of Linstead, said his neighbours say there is no money to spend. "Based on previous grand markets, this one will not be able to compare because a lot of people don't have money to spend," said Richards.

"There is no buzz, everyone tells me there is no money to spend. We all look forward to grand market, so I guess there will be more sellers than buyers," he continued.

Tamaria Johnson, also of Linstead, acknowledged that the excitement of shopping is a thing of the past.

"Grand market always bring joy to the people of Linstead and surrounding areas," she pointed out, adding that there will be a lot of people doing window shopping.

Meanwhile, councillor for the Linstead division of the St Catherine Parish Council, Hubbert Garriques, said while there will be, in his view, a decline in spending, the people will be out in their numbers on Saturday.

"The crowd will be there. After all, this is Linstead grand market. I am not sure as to the kind of support the vendors will get, people are not so upbeat, they don't see the extra money to spend," he told The Gleaner.

"As to my own Christmas work programme, which usually provides some relief to persons who have been unemployed for a long time, the allocation I received was drastically cut this year," Garriques noted.

"I was unable to employ some people who badly needed a break," Garriques disclosed.

According to him, all the contingencies are already in place for the event, including the closing off of Upper and Lower King streets, as well as Fletchers Avenue, to facilitate the grand market crowd.