Canberra’s Old Bus Depot Markets are the place to be for lovers of fine hand-crafted wares, clothing collectors, food fanatics and jewellery junkies. Held on Sundays, the markets are located in a fabulous old industrial building along the Kingston foreshore, and not too far from the trendy suburbs of Kingston and Manuka and Canberra’s many famed attractions.
These nationally award-winning markets are always full of atmosphere—buzzing with the large crowds who come to meet the friendly stallholders and see what wonderful creations they’ve brought with them each week. Here are six stallholders that give the markets their unique flavour.
John Marshall—Ice Cream Maker
Making the most delicious ice cream from his home, John has been obsessed by food since he was a kid. Around six years ago, he bought a gelato making machine, and has been refining his ice cream making techniques ever since. John is a true artisan, with a real passion for what he does, and a friendly smile to accompany a delicious sample to passers by.
Fekerte Tesfaye—Ethiopian Food Queen
Fekerte is an original stallholder who started on Day One of the Old Bus Depot Markets. She is arguably the single person responsible for the cuisine of her homeland gaining a profile in the Nation’s Capital, and her stall has proven so popular over the years that she graduated to full-scale restaurant ownership a few years ago in Dickson. That said, she still finds time to serve her delicious cooking to the folks at the markets each Sunday.
Anthony Hill—Award-winning Author
Anthony is a former journalist who has written many books and is a former speech-writer for Governors General Bill Hayden and Sir William Deane. Anthony became a full time writer
in 1998. His book Soldier Boy, about 14 year old Jim Martin, the youngest known Anzac, won a NSW Premier’s Literary Award and led to the writing of two more military themed books, Young Digger and Animal Heroes. Anthony has a number of published titles that are all available to purchase at his stall, and he is always on hand to do a book signing.
Wendy Lees—Jeweller and Metalworker
Wendy and her husband specialise in re-cycled and up-cycled jewellery using copper and brass. If you are wondering what up-cycling is, it’s about taking something that is quite simple and utilitarian like a piece of copper piping, and making it into something beautiful. Each piece is
a one-off creation with a lifetime guarantee in craftsmanship. She is quite adamant that she does not want her pieces coming back, so ensures strength with ‘tough testing” that involves feet and arms and a substantial bit of yanking. The pieces are tactile and textured, with a real artisan feel and earthy qualities.
Brian Loader—Cheese & Charcuterie Purveyor
Brian has been at the markets for 19 years, and never without his Greek fisherman’s cap, he’s one of the characters that is hard to miss. He sells a range of boutique cheeses, olives, and other great deli style products including salamis, hams and artisan charcuterie. Cheeses are currently sourced from Tarago River in the Gippsland, and include some amazing creamy delicacies such as the Triple Cream, along with marinated goat’s cheese, chevré and various “reds” and “blues.”
Annie Storey—Ornamental Coppersmith
Annie has been at the markets for more than 10 years. She sources all of her copper from scrap metal yards where she finds coppers, hot water systems and copper trays, which she then dismantles and cuts into shapes ready to be forged over an anvil and welded together. She also uses down pipes, fridge and gas tubing, electrical wire and water pipes for the stems and reeds.