SHEDNOTES 172: HATHERLEIGH MART

The Shed is currently supplying a village website at
http://horrabridge.org.uk/
and has posted the following under

PLACES TO GO
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If Hatherleigh will excuse the summary, it’s Tuesday auction is a proper old flea market.
You go to sift through piles of junk, one of which could yours for as little as £1, and wait for your opportunity to pick up buried treasure.
The way to enjoy it is to have some change in your pocket and follow the auctioneer from lot to lot, wondering who on earth would buy that and then finding out – a plastic table, a generator, a drill, a good old hemp rope with tackle made to last a hundred years, a box of old tools, a painted lady made of bamboo, four piles of old railway magazines which somebody offers £1 for. The auctioneer tells him he’s a saint.
At first glance, it all looks a bit glum, but we soon got into the spirit and found a useful set of auger bits and a couple of decent-looking fishing reels and later wished we had hung around long enough to offer a fiver for each. In the end, we settled for a jar of pickled quail’s eggs and some veg from the stalls outside the main auction hut.

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There is a campaign to keep it open as “the soul of Hatherleigh”, a small town near Okehampton. A resident has been quoted as saying: “Once a week the town comes alive. You can buy anything from a duck to a loaf of bread.”
But planning permission has been granted to build housing on the site and although there is no start date, it looks as if that will happen.
Meanwhile, the Vicks family, owners of the site, continue to run it, in between the other markets which are their main business.
Find their programme at
http://www.vickshatherleighmarket.co.uk/

Cattle auctions take place every 2nd and 4th Thursday of each month, from 11 am, and on some additional dates in October and November.
Sheep auctions take place every Monday.
Tuesdays are set aside for poultry, waterfowl, small mammals (e.g. ferrets and rabbits) and the “furniture and household sundry auction”.
Horse, pony, saddlery and tack auctions are usually held on the the 2nd or 3rd Wednesday of each month.
A monthly sale of hand tools, agricultural machinery and implements, is held on the 4th Saturday of each month.
Check the website for dates of an occasional “Ruby Market”, centred on farm food and handicraft stalls.
It looks likely the livestock business will go to a much more modern facility at Holsworthy, 10 miles away, when this one closes.

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Pictures by Andrew Pain

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