Residents of Washington, Tyne and Wear, have plenty to look forward to this Summer as a brand-new food market arrives in Albany Park from May.


Newly formed, Washington Does Culture, which is a collaboration between An Open House Community Interest Company, and business consultancy LexSpark LTD, are planning a series of cultural events and experiences across the town of Washington kickstarting the summer with the Washington Food Market.


Pictured at Albany Park, home of the Washington Food Market, is Richard Murr, organiser of Washington Does Culture and Sharon Hodgson, MP for Washington and Sunderland West

Starting on Sunday 23rd May, and running every four weeks until 15th September, organisers promise a wide range of independent businesses, both locally and regionally, with a mixture of cuisines, from authentic German sausages to vegan tacos, along with some non-food items such handmade soap, wax melts and gifts. There’ll even be food items for our friends of a furry nature with Puppy Sue’s K9 Kitchen.


Richard Murr, one of the organisers, and Director of Open House CIC, told us that Washington is overdue these kinds of events.

“During the pandemic and the various lockdowns, residents of Washington rediscovered green spaces on their doorsteps, and when they could, they also visited many of the local independent businesses uncovering what the town truly has to offer. With the Washington Food Market, we plan to bring these two elements together”


“As restrictions ease, people may be looking to get back out on the road visiting other areas of the region, but we encourage them to leave the car at home and stay local. This is why we’ve chosen Albany Park to host our event, not only does it have fantastic public transport links, with concord bus station just a 5-minute walk away, it’s also accessible from many of the villages in Washington, most of which are under a 20-minute walk.”

Richard added.


Sunderland City Council has approved the plans, and Sharon Hodgson, MP for Washington and Sunderland West has added her support.

“Washington is a beautiful place for people to live and work. With the plans submitted by the team at Washington Does Culture, including the food market, I believe that we’ll see more people wanting to stay local and engage in cultural activities around the town”


Sharon added

“I’m delighted that Washington has attracted the interest of event organisers and I’m looking forward to seeing our community coming together in Albany Park, which is one of the many excellent green spaces we are so lucky to have in Washington.”

Robin Kennedy, owner of Washington based independent, Taco Libre, shared his excitement,

"We’re a recently new venture looking to plug a gap in delicious vegan taco’s, and whilst it’s nice to travel the north east visiting markets, and street food events, having a market in our hometown, which has over 70,000 residents, is amazing.”

“We can’t wait to cook for our community and be a part of something new that has the potential to be a long-term part of Washington’s rich heritage.”


Pictured is an example of what to expect from Taco Libre at the food market.