Roll up! Wymondham market trader retires after 47 years

David Large who is retiring from his plant stall at Wymondham Market after 47 years. Picture: DENISE

David Large who is retiring from his plant stall at Wymondham Market after 47 years. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2017

While many of us have enjoyed working in the comfort of an office, David Large has battled through all weathers and seasons to run his market stall for nearly half a century.

But this month is the end of an era at Wymondham market as the 69-year-old finally retires from his popular plant stall after 47 years.

Mr Large, from Tharston near Diss, started on the market in 1970.

He had previously been helping out on the plant and shrub stall as a favour to previous owner David Webb when he caught the market trading bug and took over the business when Mr Webb retired.

Since then he has seen the market change, not least as it battled with competition from supermarkets such as Morrisons.

But in recent years, he said the market has gained in strength as shoppers prefer a more personal service.

'Wymondham is a good market town,' he said. 'I think it speaks for itself in that how long I've been here. The market has shrunk a little bit, but in the last couple of years it has picked up again and in my heart of hearts I do think it will continue to do well.'

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'The markets haven't changed a lot but the ways you do trade have.'

The father-of-three said he would not miss the 3.30am starts, seven-day-a-week working and the winters on the stall - but he said he would miss the customers and his fellow stall holders.

'I am going to miss the market,' he said. 'I'll miss the customers terribly. They are like family. We're all on first name terms. I've grown up with a lot of my customers, I think that's why I put the retirement off. It's been a good life and I have enjoyed it.

'I learnt all of my knowledge off my customers. There wasn't the Internet in those days it was all general knowledge.'

Customers have expressed their sadness at Mr Large's retirement.

Martin Nix, who has been visiting the stall for over 20 years said: 'He is definitely one of the characters of the market.'

Peter Keeling, who runs a fruit and veg stall on Wymondham market said: 'The market will be a quieter place without him.

'He's always happy and bubbly, speak to anyone and he will be truly missed but he deserves to have a good retirement.'

A spokesman from Wymondham Town Council said: 'We appreciate Mr Large's service to the market and town and we hope that he has a good retirement.'