Middlesbrough was always a place with not a lot going for itself. It’s my hometown and it’ll always hold a special place in my heart no matter what but it’s safe to say the options in Middlesbrough were limited. Over the past few years, Middlesbrough has been very up and coming with an incredible amount of exciting new bars, restaurants, cafes, activities and even events.
In the centre of town, just past the high street, you’ll find Bedford Street and Baker Street, the current hippest streets of Middlesbrough. Baker Street was the first for a revamp a few years ago when the street which once contained just an orthodontist and a few offices starting opening up vintage clothes shops and indie pubs. It’s taken a few years to follow but this year saw Baker Street’s revamp. The street had one pub at the end and the rest of the street was unused but now it’s an exciting place to visit. Cocktail bars, cake shops and a variety of interesting restaurants has seen Bedford Street take it’s place beside Baker Street as arguably the hippest area in town. The best thing about these two streets is that they are completely independent. You won’t find any chains around, every single place is owned and run by a local who had a dream and ran with it. Along with the brand new Bedford Street came the Orange Pip Market. The market runs on the last Saturday of the month on these two streets and gives even more independents in the area a chance to pop down, sell their products and get their name out. I’ve wanted to visit ever since I saw it had started back in May but with being in a different country, the November edition was the first one I could attend and it did not disappoint.
The market is mainly a food market with different companies from the Teesside area and slightly further afield in the North East selling their unique ideas. Fudge, cupcakes, cheeses, gourmet Scotch eggs and flavoured jerkey are just some of the options that you can take away with you. There are also many hot foot restaurants at the market serving you up there and then. The well-known spaghetti, pizza and noodles are served in the same market as something called a crispy conewich and a traditional deep-fried dough bread from Naples. Then for a sweet option you have the donut guy and crepes on offer. There is so much variety at the market that it can be difficult to choose. I opted for seasoned fries with snake dust which were delicious (I’m still not sure what snake dust is though) and was going to also get the Naples bread but my stomach ran out of room unfortunately. I washed it down with a delicious cup of mulled wine and bought myself a bubblegum vegan cupcake from The Green Room’s stall and a variety of flavoured fudge for later.
Besides the food, you’ll find a few crafts on offer, this month they were decorating ceremaic tiles, as well as hair braiders and a portrait artist on Bedford Street. Whip round the corner onto Baker Street and you’ll find a pink tipi in the centre of the street hosting entertainment throughout the day. We managed to catch two of the acts whilst wandering round. We caught a band of fez wearing men who performed baritonal renditions of classics followed by watching the most bizarre performance act I think I have ever witnessed. Disco bingo. Two women, in the middle of the street, pulling out bingo numbers which were related to a dance move and then performing the dance move, trying to get everyone else joining in. It was very eccentric, very over-the-top but all just in the name of a good laugh and everyone seemed to enjoy it.
Orange Pip Market was everything I expected and more with a fantastic range of stalls and a lot on offer. Some of the stalls change so every month is different but some firm favourites stay the same. If you’re around Middlesbrough on the last Saturday of the month, it’s definitely worth a visit.
All opinions are my own and just that: opinions.
This blog post is not sponsored or endorsed in any way.
Some photos are supplied by Orange Pip Market.