FOR the second year running a new style of market rolled into Grays town centre on Thursday (17 November).
The Social Enterprise Market Place event gave many local organisations the chance to showcase their wares and services to shoppers and passers-by in George Street.
It was organised by Thurrock Council under the Low Carbon Business Programme as part of the Government’s package of publicly-funded business support designed to help companies start and grow.
Among the social enterprises taking part were businesses with charitable and environmental objectives at their heart, and the market place gave visitors a chance to see what they had to offer and learn about the benefits they create.
The range of goods and services on offer included: furniture, paints, craft materials, credit and savings, dance classes and more. Staff from Thurrock Council were also on hand to offer help and advice to budding social entrepreneurs.
Mayor of Thurrock, Cllr Charlie Curtis spent an hour visiting the stalls and talking with everyone there before presenting Carol Reed and Carol O’Regan from the Thurrock Play Network’s Pyramid Resource Centre with £100 in vouchers as the best stall on the day.
David Lawrence, Managing Director of local social enterprise Thurrock Re-use Project (TRUP) said: “This event is an opportunity for Thurrock social enterprises to show what they can do and hopefully inspire others to start a social enterprise.
“There are loads of social enterprises out there that don’t call themselves ‘social enterprises’ but are. They’re missing out on free help and support and the opportunity to promote their goods and services to a big audience.”
This programme is supported by funding from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), which is managed by East of England Development Agency (EEDA) and is being delivered in this area by Thurrock Council.