A world of difference can lie between two people manning adjacent stalls at London’s Borough Market. One can be a former curator led by a nose for adventure, while the other can be a long-time chef consistent in his path; one can be a farmer who painstakingly produces his own products, while the other can be an importer sourcing produce from the places that grow them best; and one can be someone eager to tell you stories of what the Borough was like decades ago, while the other would rather look forward, musing about what it should be several years from now.
As a major food market in London, diversity is a thing of nature for the Borough Market. It is the largest of its kind in the country. And while it was initially a place dedicated to the marketing of produce, it has since evolved into a massive establishment now offering various products while satisfying different tastes.
Of course, the people running it are equally as diverse. But no matter how different two individuals may be, if they’re part of this community sprawling over Southwark, Central London, then chances are those two people have at least one thing in common: a love for food, the very thing that has held this place together for generations.
With a history reportedly dating all the way back to 1014, the Borough Market is said to be one of the oldest establishments of its kind in London. According to its website, among its earlier incarnations was founded when 13th century traders were relocated to what is now known as Borough High Street. A market has existed in the area ever since.
In 1755, however, the market was shut down by Parliament. This led a group of Southwark residents to raise £6,000, purchase a piece of land known locally as The Triangle, and reopen it. Since this revival, the Borough Market began cementing its position as one of the most important destinations of its kind in London. These days, no food trip taken in the city can be considered complete without a visit to the market. Meanwhile, its long-enduring association to unique, high-quality food products remains reputable, thanks to the safeguarding of a passionate internal government.
Nowadays, the market is home to a long list of unusual culinary offerings. It also continues to evolve, as it remains open to new concepts to be thoroughly evaluated by its panel. But even after decades since its launch, temporal closure, and eventual revival, certain things remain unchanged in the Borough. The love for food, of course, is still intact. It continues to be shared even between two people who may also have a world of difference between them.
The Borough Market is located at 8 Southwark St, London SE1 1TL, United Kingdom. Its retail market operates on Wednesday to Thursday 10 am to 5 pm, Fridays from 10 am to 6 pm, and Saturdays from 8 am to 5 pm.