Bringing back the buzz

Emily Ziegelaar and her suitcase stall full of vintage clothing .
Emily Ziegelaar and her suitcase stall full of vintage clothing .

The night markets gave local artists a chance to sell their wares, gave shops in the mall extended trading, featured Australian first suitcase stalls and had a variety of street food.

People danced into the night to the sounds of the swing band and after the markets had ended to buskers on drums and guitars.

The markets came to fruition after market organiser Rhys Williams attended the Mindil night markets in the Northern Territory.

‘The idea was to provide an example of how Mandurah can be a creative and energetic city,’ he said.

Community Solutions will run a further four markets and it is part of a broader plan to implement a series of grassroots projects. Mr Williams said people regarded these projects as ‘just something to do’.

‘What we know about economic development is grass roots projects make people feel part of something and shifts the economy of a place,’ he said.

‘Governments need to create policies that support the community getting involved in these activities.

‘It’s what people can taste and touch and feel – it’s about making Mandurah a creative city.’

Before the markets, Mr Williams said people had said, ‘What, you’re having it at night time? Mandurah isn’t safe enough’.

‘But the best way to reduce crime is to bring people into a place, it’s more effective than police and CCTV,’ he said.

‘We have an energising culture and we are on the verge of rebuilding our identity.’