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New Block of Cuba St to Host its First Event

Press Release

5 November 2012

New Block of Cuba St to Host its First Event

The recently landscaped northern block of Cuba St between Wakefield and Manners Streets will host its first event on Saturday 1 December.

The event is the “Civic Crafts” market, which features elegantly presented beautiful and creative items, and will be open from 10am to 5pm. The landscaping design specifically caters to market stalls, and local events manager Martin Wilson has been looking forward to trialling the space. Wilson says, “The intention is to enhance this central part of our city with a beautiful presentation of attractive and interesting items.“

Wilson has run several “Civic Crafts” markets previously, all held in Civic Square in the early 1990s. Seeing the appeal at that time of those outdoor crafts markets, WCC encouraged Wilson to run a regular weekend market in Civic Square, but after two summers the wind eventually won that battle. “Market-based events have a pattern of being one-day events in Wellington, as it’s too hard to try to compete with the wind on a regular basis. We’re prepared to take the risk if its only one day! The recent advent of vege markets, which are waterproof, has blossomed, and other indoor boutique and craft markets are becoming established through the hard work of their managers. Markets are a fun and attractive part of our weekend activities and trading patterns.”

The date selected is the day before the Thorndon Fair, so travelling and local stallholders can choose to get an extra day’s trading that weekend, or to hedge their bets on the weather.

Wilson says the site is intended to be used as an events site, although this market will not be advertised as an event. “We want to make the city look attractive, and provide something for the public to enjoy. This block is well designed to host these stalls beside the footpaths.” There is already a 10km speed limit for cars in that block, but having any mix of cars and pedestrians can pose a serious safety risk, so WCC and the event managers are taking suitable extra precautions to ensure the safety of the public.

In the future the city can look forward to this block hosting, or being part of, other major events. The pedestrian-friendly landscaping was partly a trade-off for losing the Manners Mall pedestrian area to bus lanes.

Wilson is a Cuba St regular, having started the Upper Cuba Street Carnivals in 1986, and more recently circulated a proposal for a Latin “Carnaval de Cuba” in Cuba St for next Easter 2013.

Further details and stall applications are available at:



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