Billingsgate Porters challenge City of London Markets Committee

THE union representing the fish porters at Billingsgate Market, has today (Monday) warned the City of London Markets Committee that it risks destroying the heritage of the world famous fish market and has called on the Mayor of London Boris Johnson to step in.

As the Market Committee met today to change the running of how the Poplar market, Unite has said that the revocation of the byelaws will have “disastrous” consequences.

But committee members voted to scrap the “outdated” laws which mean only licesed porters can move stock around the market.

Debbie McSweeney, Unite officer, said: “The members of the Markets Committee must think again before they destroy the heritage of the iconic Billingsgate Fish Market in London’s East End. The consequences for Market and its workforce will be disastrous.

“The Mayor of London must now step in and ensure Billingsgate Market is not smashed by the City of London Corporation.

“Over 120 fish porters work within Billingsgate Market and their expertise and knowledge ensures the market is well run and successful. They will lose their livelihoods.”

Unite fish porters gathered more than 15,000 signatures of support in their campaign in support of the byelaws.

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The porters lobbied the members of the committee as they arrived at the meeting this morning handing out leaflets outlining their opposition to the revocation of the bye laws.