NEWPORT Market reopened - following an ambitious redevelopment project - nearly four months ago.

The historic building, based in Newport city centre, was transformed by LoftCo and reopened its doors for a busy day on March 19, with businesses operating from Wednesday to Sunday (and some of the businesses - including the Academy coffee bar opening seven days a week).

Newport Market is home to numerous food and drink stalls, retail units, a variety of spaces for events, with plans to bring the underground vaults back into use recently given the go-ahead,

In the past four months the market has already seen changes. While The Elephants Ear, Rae Bartons Fruit & Veg, and Imagenation are no longer based in the building, a new bar (Sip) has opened, Sheffs has established itself, and Younique Essentials has upgraded to a bigger unit.

A new cake shop is also set to open in the building - you can read about that here.

We spoke to some of the traders about how business has been and why they think it’s important to shop local...

Younique Essentials

Business owner, Tony Collyer, said that the market has gone "from strength to strength" since reopening.

South Wales Argus:

Mr Collyer said:

We had a back stall in the market for six weeks but it proved popular and outgrew the space."

The new unit includes a built-in treatment; in September Mr Collyer is starting a Coleg Gwent course for complementary treatments (such as Indian head massages, reiki, etc.) which will eventually be offered at Younique Essentials.

Little Acorns at Home

Sarah Fussell, who sells homemade interior decor, and also has an online presence, said that "it's been really good" in Newport Market, although the weather can be a factor.

"We've had a really good response and lots of repeat customers," she said.

"It's just about getting my name out there more."

South Wales Argus:

She's been trying to enhance the business online, giving people the option to browse the web or visit the store. Although still far off she hopes to open seven days a week during the festive period.

"People should shop local because it boosts Newport's economy.

"Supporting Newport can mean bigger development for the city.

Jamieson's Juice Factory (Jjf)

Business owners, Natasha and Eugene Jamieson, agreed that opening in the market has been "positive" but acknowledged there has been a lull.

Mrs Jamieson said: "It was really good in the beginning - the market was a novelty and everyone was interested.

"The weeks are quiet now, but it's busy on weekends and great when there are events bringing in some new faces.

"It’s been really positive with a lot of support for the vendors."

South Wales Argus:

"There's been a lull but it is getting better," 

added Mr Jamieson.

When asked why people should support local businesses, Mrs Jamieson replied:

"When you support a local business you’re supporting a person’s dreams, rather than big corporations.

"Time and effort goes into creating products and your support means so much to them."

She added that supporting local business also helps boost the city and community.

Friendly Neighbourhood Comics

Friendly Neighbourhood Comics - which was also based at Newport Market prior to LoftCo's redevelopment project - offers comics and original artwork, including commissions, by business owner Tim Rees.

South Wales Argus:

Mr Rees said:

"It has been really good and lively; there has definitely been a significant increase in footfall.

"I'm glad that I stuck with the revamped version [of the market]; it's modern, trendy, and current.

"It was always LoftCo’s intention to have niche shops which aren’t majorly represented in the High Street."

Eco Earth Market

Conor Duddrige, who sells eco-friendly products and recently launched a refill bar, acknowledged there was a "strong" start for Newport Market and that there are now some quieter periods.

"It started strong and we have a lot of regulars who come back," he said.

"Weekends are still going strong, but there are quiet periods - especially in the sun."

South Wales Argus:

He added that the refill bar is "doing well" with washing up liquid proving popular and a 15 per cent sale throughout Plastic Free July.

"People should support local business because the money goes back into the local economy; by supporting us you support the city.

"Plus it's better for the enivronment to buy locally."

Dorothy Seed

Dorina and Rupert Mag run florist, Dorothy Seed, which focuses on using sustainable and local produce, also offering workshops in floral arrangements and collaborating with other traders.

Ms Mag said: "It has been great reaching out to the community and getting to know people.

"There's been a positive response in our ethos and people seem to be moving away from chemically treated flowers, which are not good for the planet or for people's health."

South Wales Argus:

She added that she enjoys giving people a personal experience, meeting them and discussing their wants - especially as flowers are mainly for events and special occassions.

"When you shop locally you know the person; you get that personal experience.

"And it's not just about me - it's about all of us."

Newport Distillery

Josh Collins, who was manning Newport Distillery but does not own it, said: "I think everyone was excited for the opening and that's gone down a bit - Wednesdays and Thursdays are quite quiet for us."

South Wales Argus:

When asked about supporting local business, he replied:

"People are more interested in things that are local - our drinks are made in Wales and support Wales."

For a look back on the Market in years past click here.