New Covent Garden
Kirbys has been based at New Covent Garden Market, the UKs leading wholesale and distribution site for fresh produce, since 1994.
The 56-acre market is well situated in Vauxhall, on the southern bank of the River Thames, just 10 minutes from the centre of London.
The site is also known as the Larder of London, and has established itself as the primary source for all catering needs in the capital and the South East.
New Covent Garden is celebrating its 30th anniversary in Vauxhall this year. The market in fact dates back to medieval days when the Abbey of Westminster owned the Convent Garden from which surplus produce was sold to Londoners near to the Strand. A regular market grew up and in 1670 Charles II granted a charter to the Earl of Bedford to hold a market there.
The market grew rapidly and the Dedicated or Charter Market, designed by James Fowler, was erected in 1829/30. Eventually, the Market spread to some 30 acres. The government recognised that public sector involvement would be necessary to modernise the Market and this was formalised in 1961.
To this day, the Market is managed by the Covent Garden Market Authority, under the auspices of Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA).