Clearly those dealers with shops in the road and those few antique stallholders in arcades with their own rate account were eligible for, and got, grants.
However, all those who are in arcades, or are in the road, for the Saturday antiques market and who pay a rental to their landlord but who do not have a rate account because that is in the name of their landlord, are ineligible for the discretionary grant and get nothing.
The Portobello market is obviously not what it once was but it is still an important market, with dealers who depend for their living on the Saturday market day.
It has also been, since the war, an extraordinary source of benefit to the borough and has brought worldwide fame to the area. Why on earth should the borough exclude the traders from any relief just because the antiques market is on Saturdays?
They are giving grants to the six day-a-week fruit and vegetable traders who have actually been able to trade. The antiques market, on the other hand, has only just re-opened and will disappear without support.
The London Silver Vaults
ATG asked Kensington and Chelsea council for a response. It said: “In June, we gave out grants totalling £185,000 to 71 market traders as part of the council’s own Business Interruption Fund, almost half of the total 147 recipients of the fund.
“All market traders can apply to the Local Authority Discretionary Fund and the council has not excluded any traders, either on street or in arcades, from receiving grants.
“When considering applications, we have prioritised applications from traders who hold and operate six or seven day permits as they rely heavily on their trade here in Kensington and Chelsea for their income.”