Posts Tagged ‘Farm Direct’


March 9, 2018

WOULD RAMSAY VOTERS LIKE THEIR “OWN REPRESENTATIVE” IN PARLIAMENT  No not a representative of a political party, a representative for YOU!

Some one who will work 24/7 using their power in parliament for YOU, their spare time for YOU, their income to make things Better for YOU.

We can work together, not just to make Salisbury great again, but we can lead the way as a community and set a great example for the rest of the state.

I am already increasing my “Farm Direct Markets”, to create even more jobs, and increase savings on genuine fresh produce, promoting healthy eating and helping lower the cost of living.

My markets already feed around 15,000 families, but we can do more.

I would like to expand my support of local schools, who utilise my markets to teach about healthy eating, and can do even more if elected.

I will work to support local small businesses, by ensuring they get council and government contracts, creating real local jobs in Salisbury and teaching skills to our children.

We can demand all government infrastructure investment employs South Australian workers, by saying no to the increase in 457 visa workers.

Ensure all animal rescue is supported by no kill ethics, we can work together to lead in animal welfare reform. I am already involved in rescue and run the local native wildlife sanctuary.

Support me in the development  “Feed the north” program to ensure our vulnerable are fed and supported. I will fund this either through donations or my parliamentary wage if elected, my market stall holders will help supply the produce.

I will Lobby to clean up and beautify our streets, parks and reserves, and get those shopping trolleys out of our streets with compulsory coin deposit systems.

If we cannot educate which ever government that is elected, to correct current power prices and reliability through investment in base load power renovation, we can set up our own consortium, so we can enjoy reliable and affordable power.

I can use my vote to ensure the roll out of subsidised solar initiatives are offered in an equitable way to all Ramsay residents.

We must restore the Salisbury police station to a 24-hour service, and lobby for increased local services.

Working together, we can lobby to increase staff levels and upgrade equipment at the Lynell McEwin Hospital to improve emergency department waiting times and elective surgery lists, which are now the longest in 20 years. If you or your child becomes sick or injured, we need to know immediate help is available, as it used to be.

I will demand emergency department workers retain their penalty rates, to ensure we retain after hours services, and reduce waiting times.

We should all work to create genuine anti-bullying programs, including the empowerment of local police services to deal with online bullying.

I will continue to lobby to expand the wet lands projects to increase our ability to store potable water by utilising our aquifers, while also restoring “Native habitat”.

We need to precure funding to upgrade Kings road and Salisbury interchange crossings to improve traffic flows, and I will do all I can to get increased commonwealth funding for local road works and upgrades.

I will work with the government in return for increase public transport services for the Salisbury area, in each case reporting to you on any decisions.

I would like your views on creating off-road bike parks and skid areas, away from residential areas, to get hoons of our streets.

I will continue to lobby to reform electoral law, to introduce optional preferential voting and improve the general conduct and accountability, something I am well studied to demand.

This is all very achievable if we work together as a team, with me using my balance of power position and parliamentary income to increase services and investment for you, the people I will represent.

If you do not support me, I will still lobby for all these reforms, and invest my time and money to achieve them.

I have always tried to achieve my promises even though I have not been elected, but if you show me some faith and give me a chance, I can do even more as your paid representative in government.

I promise I will make you proud you supported me, and I will earn the title of honourable.

If you have any questions, you can either phone and have a chat, or google my name and the topic of interest to you.


Mark Aldridge Independent “Representing You”


Farm Direct “Statement of effect” draft for debate

July 19, 2016

Development application “Statement of Effect” Farm Direct Community Markets.

Farm direct logo 7



Farm direct markets have invested its hard work successfully over the past 4 years, into creating the best markets in the state which are dedicated to providing for the City of Salisbury’s rate payers.

We are also lobbying the state government and appealing the recent ERC court findings, as we are committed to protect all community events in the north.

We have opened 2 of South Australia’s largest and most successful markets in the Salisbury council area, and have operated without any adverse effects to the City, the development objectives and the community.

Farm Direct has drained all its resources on the drawn out approval process and the following legal battle, so is unable to employ a suitable development expert to produce our statement of effect, we therefore apologise for any deficiency in the contents.


Farm Direct Markets have operated professionally and without incident in the Salisbury area for well over 4 years in 2 locations, Salisbury Height’s and Parafield.

Regardless of the new precedents relating to the definition of a stall, Farm Direct is still simply a temporary produce market, that has no permanency and the market is supported by the community in general. Merit applications are still development applications that are supported by and benefit the community, which means they are in line with community standards and the Markets definitely fulfils that wish.

I would like to remind the development planners, the council and the elected members that the market “Farm Direct” has now operated on site for over 12 months, without any adverse impact on the site, local traffic, parking, health and safety, significant tree’s, the heritage aspects of the site etc etc.

We have met and exceeded many directives of the city of Salisbury, increased employment opportunity, the promotion of healthy eating, access to affordable fresh produce. We remain environmental friendly, we encourage a sustainable future through growing produce to meet demand and we are helping unite the community.

The Market relocated from the initial site in Parafield (PALS car parking area) to the Old Spot hotel car park just over 12 months ago. On July the 21st 2015 we applied for development approvals and passed a raft of application processes as a “Merit” type use.

The Market underwent a category 3 public notification process, passed referrals to DPTI, DENWR, Development engineering, Civic design and traffic, Environmental health and safety, passing in each case.

The approval was disputed on competitive grounds, and the ERD court found that a Market was in fact a non-complying development, that a trestle table with goods for sale or display, was a shop for the purpose of the definitions of the development Act.

This set a new precedent on how development law is defined in relation to any temporary stall, but we ought not forget a stall is not a building, and has no lasting impression on the land, so when defining any application that utilises stalls, will never be the same as those applied to bricks and mortar, regardless of the definitions.

The fact that development law and planning has overlooked stalls, markets and fetes in their definitions, allowed the recent redefining to include a stall in the definition of the word shop. The fact community events were never considered developments, but rather events, events of a regular basis, development definitions failed to protect community events. Community events have been a part of the city of Salisbury history since its inception.

The location of Farm Directs present Salisbury Height’s Market at the Old Spot hotel is on private land, land that’s primary use is retail based, the zoning of “Open Space” is based more on the adjacent river and walk ways/trails, than the area built to have its primary use to be that of a car park for retail and hotel trading.

Farm direct helps maintain the “Open Space” concept and promotes the local community to embrace and utilise the current area in an appropriate manner.

Farm Direct has appealed the ERD court’s decision before the full bench of the Supreme Court, which is being heard on the 1st of August 2016, in hope of overturning the decision of the court, therefore restoring the original development approvals put in place by the City of Salisbury.

Farm Direct is financing the legal challenge to protect your development planning’s sections decision.

Farm Direct has submitted a non-complying development application “Statement of Support” which has been accepted by the council development section, and best be read in conjunction with this statement of effect.



A Farmers type market of up to 40 stalls when operating at its peak, operating in the Northern car park of the Old Spot hotel on Saturdays and a smaller market of approximately 1/3 that size operating on a Wednesday, between the hours of 8.00am and 1.00pm, operating independently of the operations of the existing hotel.

The site supports approx. 240 on site car parking spaces’, parking has been boosted during market days by improved access to a run off car park on the hill, and a temporary stall holder carpark on the northern boundary has also been created.

The Market stalls and walkways occupy approx. 1800m2 (45 to 49 car parking spaces and a bus bay) of the northern carpark area.

Although not promoted by the market, the Carisbrooke Park carpark on the western side of Main North road adjacent the site has been utilised by some patrons. Access from the Carisbrooke car park, is easily and safely achieved by a pedestrian walkway under main north road.

The Markets also promote the use of existing walking trails to access the market for the local community as a part of its promotion of healthy living.

Stalls predominantly offer fresh produce, with an assurance that all produce and product is locally sourced where possible, and that anything sold will have been produced or grown in Australia. Other stalls with in the Market will include local handicraft, plants, Australian nuts, locally produced olive oil, Fresh baked goods, cakes and takeaway.

Toilet facilities are available in Carisbrook Park, but patrons are advised by the market to utilise facilities with in the Hotel and Bottle shop, which are open for use during the markets operation times.


The subject land is contained in lot 200 of DP 41172 being certificate of title, Volume 6050 Folio 968 also known as 1955 main north rd, Salisbury Heights.

The privately owned land is irregular in shape and bounded by open space and the Little Para River to the north and open space to the east and south, Main North road is the sites Western boundary.

In recent times improvements to the hotel were approved by council and the additions are of a retail nature.

An easement 30 meters wide in favour of Transmission Lessor Corporation and Electranet PL traverses the northern portion of the site. A second and substantially smaller easement in favour od the Distribution Lessor Corporation is located further south.


The site is located in a location that includes retail sales and open space zoning.

Open space zoning is all about limiting construction to preserve the looks, dynamics and public access to development zones.

Farm Direct community markets even as a non-complying development meets those demands, it is aesthetically pleasing to the land scape when it is in operation, had no lasting impact on the land and promotes community participation in the zone, also utilising the connecting open space utilities and councils park and trial facilities.

The site contains the state heritage listed Old Spot hotel, and a freestanding bottle shop and drive through, both of which are considered retail by their nature.

Car parking (approximately) 240 spaces and bus bays, both formalised and un-formalised, together with landscaping have been provided and stablished on site, in association with the hotel.

Two vehicle access/regress points off Main North road service the site, the main cross over is located at the north end of the site adjacent the bottle shop, the second cross over is located adjacent the southern side of the property boundary.

Farm Direct has utilised the current parking and access/exit points without issue for over 12 months, they have also invested with the site owners in upgrades to parking facilities and the overflow parking on the hill top, and added parking for the stall holders on Market day.

The Market there fore is promoting the use and access to the use of the zone as intended by the legislation.


Farm Direct markets have operated in the Salisbury area for around 3 years prior to moving to the Old Spot market location in or around May 2015, in both cases the market utilized existing car parking facilities adjacent hotel developments.

Farm Direct complied with all development planning assessments at its original site adjacent Roulettes tavern and bottle shop. The move to the new location was forced by lease agreements and issues with adherence to development planning regulations not being adhered to by the land owner at the previous site.

An initial one of market was held on the site as a trial, on Saturday the 23rd of June.

The first application was to operate a Special event “Farmers Market” on the subject site. A special event is defined with in schedule 9 (11(2) of the development regulations 2008, as meaning a “community, cultural, arts, entertainment, recreational, sorting or similar event” which is in line with a merit application.

Development approval was granted for the special event (produce market) between the 29th May and 13th of June, and the market operated without issue.

The second application was to obtain Development Approval for the ongoing “Produce Market” on the site.

The development approval went through a category 3 development applications as a merit form of application, the councils lawyers supported the application as a market, and to be considered as a merit application, not as shop, which is still undergoing legal scrutiny.

The council’s approval of the markets was challenged by a market competitor in the Environment and development court, the preliminary point of argument was that a stall/trestle was indeed a shop for the purpose of the application of development law.

The argument was upheld; as such the granted approval was rendered invalid as the council had approved the market as a merit application, rather than as a non-complying application.

Farm Direct community Markets then lodged an appeal before the full bench of the Supreme court to dispute the judge’s finding, this matter is to be heard on the 1st of August, with a finding to be handed down some time in the following 6 weeks from the hearing.

  1. Social, economic and the environmental effects of the development on its locality.

Farm Directs initial Statement of support covered the social, economic and environmental benefits of the Markets on the present location in detail, so ought to be read in conjunction with this “Statement of effect”

  • SOCIAL; Farm direct attracts people from the local community and from the surrounding suburbs into the local area, to increase participation in the open space zone. We promote use of the walking trials, community participation in the market itself, the local parks and encourage the whole families and neighbour hoods to enjoy the atmosphere the market creates.


  • ECONOMIC; Farm direct supports the local economy in a variety of ways, by bringing outside investment into the Salisbury area, by creating local jobs and ensuring access to affordable fresh produce. The Markets customer base is extensive attracting financial support from all over South Australia to the local area.


  • JOB CREATION; Farm direct Markets in Salisbury alone when we include our original market site which still operates, not only employs hundreds of South Australians, many from within the cities superb. We also help encourage and support small business enterprise, bring investment into the City and help local business improve their sales.


  • HEALTHY EATING; Farm Direct promotes healthy eating, community activity and helps educate local children about healthy eating and food production by supporting school trips to the market by several local primary level classes.


  • ENVIRONMENTAL; Farm directs environmental impacts have been a huge bonus to the area. We have no adverse impact on the locality, we have improved access to the trials and ensure we clean up every day we operate beyond any impact we have. Our producers now grow to suit our customer base alleviating waste, and any excess produce is utilised by donating to those who feed the homeless and to support local animal sanctuary’s.


  1. Characterisation and public notification

Farm Direct community markets initial development application process was considered a Category 3, which allowed for a public notification process.

The development panel heard from all objectors and found in favour of approving the market as a after a lengthy debate, the decision was majority support.

  1. Statutory – Referrals

Farm direct passed all of the statutory referrals during the previous application process, and has operated under them for over 12 months without any issue arising.

  1. DPTI

Traffic flow to and from Main North Road as proposed is supported and should be appropriately managed through the course of each market to ensure driver compliance.

DPTI strongly recommended that a traffic management plan be developed by the applicant to ensure that satisfactory traffic measures are put in place for market days.

  • Adequate onsite car parking be provided;
  • All temporary signage promoting the market should be contained on the subject land and installed and removed prior to and after each market

Farm Direct has complied with the directions and recommendations of DPTI, and continues to employ professional staff to manage internal traffic flow and parking, without any issue for over 12 months.


  1. DEWNR

The impact of the proposed use on the heritage significance of the state heritage place (Old Spot Hotel) is considered acceptable, as the market stalls are temporary structures, are located some distance from the hotel and will not affect the setting of the state heritage place



The proposal was supported as it has no fixed structures.

The vicinity of the market is not subject to flooding



In order to provide efficient and safe circulation on site whilst providing pedestrian safety within the site at all times, a traffic management plan presently in place provides for accredited traffic management staff to be in place during the market operation on every Saturday.

The Market even at its busiest has been successful in handling traffic management over the past 12 months without issue.

The market attendance is expected to remain at present demand, which has resulted in vacant parking bays even at peek attendance times.



Control of waste; Reasonable steps are already in place as a result of the original approvals.

Waste from the market is managed in accordance with the South Australian Public Health Act 2011 to prevent offensive odours and not accessible to pests and vermin

All waste water generated from the activity is effectively disposed to SA Water sewerage system to prevent any risk to public health; and

The Market stall holders all have their individual Food business notifications and have passed two on site council inspections since the start of operations at the Old Spot location.


  1. DEVELOPMENT DATA Site Characteristics Guideline Proposed Site Area Farmers Market

Area Total land size approx 26,400m2, Market use is approx. 2400m2

Site Dimensions Main North Road Frontage: Depth: 185m approx. 169m approx.(varies) Site Gradient Majority of site relatively flat with a low grade to the north and Little Para River.

Southern portion of the site supports a large embankment and plateaued at the top Easement Easements exist over the site to Transmission Lessor Corporation and Electranet P/L; and Distribution Lessor Corporation

  1. Number of carparks

No guidance in presently allowed for in the Development Plan for a produce market

Over 190 car parking spaces are available on site, for both the market and hotel when both are operating.

Market operation times are not in conflict with hotel main operating times on the days of the market operation, Market has increase parking by way of stall holder parking in a temporary area, and excess parking allowed as a flow over on the northern boundary, with access limited to market operational days.

  1. Buildings Temporary stalls comprising canopies and tables


  1. Affected Trees No significant trees affected



  1. Regulated Trees No regulated trees affected


  1. Street Infrastructure Existing crossover utilised



  1. SEP No SEPs affected


  1. Electricity pole No Electricity poles affected



  1. Telecommunication pit No Telecommunication pits affected


  1. Gas No gas infrastructure affected


  1. Water No water infrastructure affected



  1. Street Trees No street trees affected


  1. Flooding The proposed market location is not prone to flooding




No serious Variance Pursuant to Section 35(2) of the Development Act 1993

It was initially recommended that the assessment Panel determine that the proposal is not seriously at variance with the Salisbury (City) Development Plan – Consolidated 20 March 2014, which passed the development panel’s approval process.

The following reasons are proffered to support this recommendation:

  • The site, although within the Open Space Zone, is already utilized for commercial purposes as a hotel incorporating retail activities.
  • The proposed stalls are only temporary, erected and removed on each market day.
  • The proposed use is within the carpark of the Old Spot Hotel and operates at a time when hotel patronage is low; and
  • The temporary nature of the market will not detrimentally impact on the state heritage place or the intent of the zone.

It has been demonstrated that the proposed development has minimal or no unreasonable external impacts, so consent could reasonably be expected to be upheld even as a “Non-complying application”

Performance of the Markets operation over the past 12 months, clearly show it has had no adverse effects on the land, the surrounding area or the community in general.

The Market has remained well supported by the local community, and has not breached any of the directives of the council or the associated development initiatives.

It should be considered that the proposed development is not ‘seriously at variance’ with the City of Salisbury Development Plan.

  1. Assessment against Development Plan Objectives and Principles Primary Development Objectives and Principles of Development Control (PDC) Development Plan Reference Assessment Zoning & Land Use General Section Centres and retail Development Objective

1 PDC 10 and 12 Zone Provisions Open Space Zone Objective(s) 1, 2 and 5 PDC 1,

4 Recreation Policies Area 15 Objectives 1 and 2 PDC 1

The proposal satisfies the requirement of Objective 2 of Precinct 15 as it will provide an additional use (market) expanding the range of activities envisaged within the precinct on a site that is commercially developed (Old Spot Hotel) and supported within PDC 5 of the Precinct.

The market is retail in nature primarily offering produce (including local content) together with arts, craft and food stalls and will service the needs in part, both from a produce and entertainment point of view, of the broader community.

The market comprises no fixed structures and will operated twice weekly from 8.00am to 1.00pm from the carpark of the hotel.

Given its temporary nature (stalls erected and removed on the day), it could be argued that the proposal will have no greater detrimental impact than what currently exists (Old Spot Hotel and carpark) on the open space character intended for zone.

The market since operation in June 2015 has complimented the site, increased participation in the local park and trail facilities and has been well supported by the local community.


  1. Appearance of Land and Buildings (Amenity)

The proposal involves temporary canopies erected and removed on the day of the market.

No permanent structures are proposed, or erected.

Whilst noted, the relevance of objective 1 and the PDCs within the General Section (Design and Appearance) in this case is somewhat diminished as the canopies are not structures and temporary.

The intent of the objective and PDCs are linked to permanent structures on land, rather than the use of temporary gazebos.

The proposed temporary canopies are small in scale and size and clustered well away from the heritage listed Hotel and Main North Road, to the point where it could be argued that they have minimal visual impact on the locality and satisfy the requirements of PDC 7 and 9 of the Open Space Zone and PDC 5b of the precinct.

Heritage SA has supplied no objections to the inclusion of temporary structures of this type and the market has now operated for over 12 months without objections of any kind relating to the general appearance of the market in its current location.

  1. Building set-backs

The proposal involves temporary canopies erected and removed on the day of the market. The proposed temporary canopies are located well back from Main North Road (over 50 metres) separated from the road by a landscaped buffer and behind the current building line.

Given this, it ought to be the view that the proposal will have minimal visual impact on the existing streetscape.

  1. Impact on Retail Centres

The proposal provides for a retail trading area of approximately 1200m2.

Whilst the argument has been put that the proposed market may now fall under the definition of shop, given the retail nature of the market and its limited times of operation, assessment against the relevant objective and principles ought to concur, what it is proposed the Market does not hinder the development of centres.

The Development Plan envisages retail development with a gross leasable floor area greater than 250m2 within integrated centres.

Clearly the majority of stalls within the market are not unique (ie fruit and vegetable stalls, bakery products and the like) and could easily be located within centre zones, admittedly at some expense (leasing of premises and overheads).

The market provides stall holders with a substantially cheaper avenue to sell their products from temporary facilities.

Representations received during the original approval process, indicate the potential for the market to impact upon the trade of existing fixed premises selling the same products.

During the first 12 months of trading on the site, no adverse effects on local centres have been noted.

Shopping development that is more appropriately located outside of business centres and shopping zones or areas, should also be of a size and type which will not hinder the development or function of any centre zone.

The nearest centre to the subject property is the Elizabeth Vale Shopping Centre (1.5km approx) other major centres include:

  • Elizabeth South Shopping Centre (3.6km approx);
  • Elizabeth Town Centre (4.0km approx.); and
  • Salisbury Town Centre (4.5km approx.).

These centres provide more than the day to day needs of people living within the locality.

Based on the type of stalls, the primary purpose of the market is to sell produce, both locally and from interstate. The retail trading area (approximately 1200m2) on the days the market is running at full capacity may be considerable, but the market does not always operate at full capacity.

Add to that the limitation on operational times and weather restrictions that will inevitably undermine the ability of the Market to affect the performance of the centres.

The market will operate from the site twice a week between the hours of 8.00am and 1.00pm and become a permanent attraction to the locality.

The Wednesday operation only encompasses an area of approximately 350m2, and is utilised by local schools, so its impact on retail centres is of a minor nature.

It is clear the 1200m2 of retail trading area proposed for the market has not had a detrimental impact on uses within nearby centres.

Two of the four nearest centres are District Centres, Elizabeth Town Centre and Salisbury Town Centre. The other two, are Elizabeth Vale Shopping Centre on Sir John Rice Avenue, Elizabeth Vale (Suburban Activity Node Zone) and Elizabeth South Shopping Centre on Phillip Highway, Elizabeth South (Neighbourhood Centre Zone) which on inspection appeared to be operating at 100% occupancy.

Whilst potentially impacting on specific similar type businesses, I do not believe it could be argued that the market would hinder the development, function and viability of those centres.

  1. Car Parking and Access

Existing car parking on site for the Old Spot Hotel and bottle shop totals approximately 240 spaces.

This is made up of over 210 paved and line marked carparks at grade with the hotel and bottle shop and an additional 30 spaces in a grassed area at the top of the embankment at the southern end of the site.

Approximately 49 spaces of the northern carpark will be taken over by the market stalls and walkways leaving 191 carparks for the benefit of the market and hotel.

The Market has also improved access to the grassed overrun parking on the grassed area on top of the rear embankment and created another 25 spaces on the northern edge of the market to accommodate stall holder parking during Saturdays market trading.

There is no car parking standards that I am aware of for markets. That said, as the market is retail in nature, a car parking rate similar to a shop (7/100m2 of gross leasable area) as outlined in Table Sal/2 (Off Street Vehicle Parking Requirements) could be applied.

Gross leasable area (GLA) is defined in Schedule 1 of the Development Regulations 2008 as meaning; “The total floor area of a building excluding public or common tenancy areas such as malls, verandas or public toilets” The market covers a maximum 2000m2 of the northern carpark and comprises both stalls (approximately 60%) and walkways (approximately 40%).

With the GLA definition in mind and noting that the proposed market is not within a building or comprise leasable floor area, based on the car parking rate of 7/100m2, it could be assumed that the proposal would generate a demand of 84 spaces leaving approximately 107 spaces for hotel and bottle-shop use.

Site visits by Council staff during the course of the Special Event revealed that the proposed market required substantially more carparks than the 84 spaces envisaged for the retail trading area, although since operating for nearly 12 months, current parking facilities have been adequate.

The proposed market intends to operate on the subject land when hotel patronage is generally low, that being in the early – mid morning period. The nature of the proposed use is such that the peak demand (given the primary use is the sale of produce – fruit and vegetables) has been early – mid morning and thus coincide with the low period of the hotel.

This was confirmed by Council Staff observations during the initial trial periods. During the peak period of the market (approximately 9.30am -11.30am) Council staff observed that the carpark demand on site exceed supply.

The Market operators opened up added parking spaces and employed licensed parking operators to ensure access to parking spaces was improved

At the same time, the proposed stall holder’s staff carpark at the top of the embankment had no more than six vehicles parked there. Since then the Market operators have made changes to internal parking, resulting in spare customer parking spaces even during peak operating times.

Even during the markets grand opening where it was running at full capacity, there appeared to be no significant queuing or detriment impact on traffic movement on Main North Road. This appeared to be in part due to patrons of the market using the Carisbrooke Park public carpark on the west side of Main North Road adjacent the subject site and assistance by the Markets professional road traffic controllers.

Council staff during the busiest markets reported they also observed that during the markets busiest days from approximately 11.30am, car parking spaces were always available on the subject land with the carparks never reaching capacity.

Substantially more spaces were available in the Carisbrooke Park carpark during the same period.

The peak car parking demand associated with the market had passed and would continue to decrease till closing. Combined, it appeared that the subject land and Carisbrooke Park carpark provided adequate off road car parking for both uses on the subject land at peak demand (approximately 9.30am -11.00am).

Due to convenience, it is likely some market patrons are likely to use the Carisbrooke Park carpark irrespective of whether car parking spaces were available on the subject land.

The traffic management plan put forward by the market identifies intended traffic circulation on site during market days and includes details of signage to be erected. This plan has been followed by the market management and traffic controllers for the past 12 months, and is preforming well.

With this Traffic Management Plan in place, the relocation of stall holder vehicles to the proposed staff carpark as proposed and use of Carisbrooke Park carpark , the proposal easily satisfies the provisions of Objective 2 and provide safe and efficient movement into, out of and within the site.


  1. Landscaping; Existing landscaping is to be retained. No additional landscaping is proposed.


  1. Environmental management;

The proposal complies with the relevant requirements. Stormwater management for the site is currently in place. The proposed market will not generate any additional runoff flow.

The applicant has put measures in place that comply with Councils Health Department requirements relating to the management of waste water.


  1. Transportation (Movement of People and Goods)

The proposal generally satisfies the Development Plan requirements relating to this section.

The applicant has submitted a Traffic Management Plan in support of the proposal. The plan supports the northern crossover into the site as entry only and the southern crossover as exit only.

Traffic circulation on site will be managed to achieve this. The Traffic Management Plan will if properly instigated by the applicant provide safe access for vehicles into, out of the site and circulation within the site.

DPTI have reviewed the Traffic Management Plan prepared by the applicant (not the most recent plan) and supporting information and in principle have raised no objection subject to vehicles accessing the site from the northern crossover and exiting the site via the southern crossover as the applicant proposes.

Farm direct has had no adverse impact on local traffic flow in the last 12 months, and even during the abnormal busy promotional periods.

The Market operators have installed extensive internal signage and employ 2 professional traffic controllers during their Saturday markets, which have proven able to effectively prevent any adverse issues, and ensure safe use of the existing plan over the past 12 months of operation.

  1. Outdoor Advertisements;

The proposal will satisfy the requirements relating to outdoor advertisements.

All signs associated with the proposed use will be temporary. The main sign promoting the market will be an A-framed sign mounted on a trailer adjacent the northern entry into the site. All other signs apart from stall identification will be small directional signs to direct vehicle traffic on site.

The proposed signs will not result in the disfigurement of the local urban environment or result in visual clutter. The main sign advertising the market is not illuminated and of a size that is not likely to distract drivers on Main North Road from their primary driving task. It is not variable (changing message) thus satisfying a DPTI requirement.



The applicant has applied for a farmers market comprising a maximum of 40 stalls and occupying approximately 2000m2 of the northern carpark of the heritage listed Old Spot Hotel at 1955 Main North Road, Salisbury Heights.

The market intends to trade on the Wednesday and Saturday of each week between the hours of 8.00am and 1.00pm. Whilst the market is retail in nature, for the reasons outlined in the background section of this report, it should be assessed as an undefined use.

The Market has operated successfully for over 12 months, with excellent support from the local community as a whole.

The Department of Environment, Waste and Natural Resources (State Heritage Unit) have advised that the proposed market will not have any adverse impacts on the heritage listed Hotel.

The proposal underwent Category 3 notification. Six (6) representations were received. The key concerns raised by representors related to onsite car parking and traffic management and the external impact of the use on traffic movement on Main North Road and local streets.

The Market has overcome all these concerns, and has operated without any recent concerns.

The proposed market will support a maximum retail trading area of approximately 1200m2 comprising a variety of stalls. The Development Plan encourages development with retail floor areas greater than 250m2 within centre zones unless it can be proven that they do not hinder the development, function and viability of centres.

It is the view of the applicant that given the nature of the use (retail) and type of activity proposed (market), whist potentially impacting commercially on selected uses within centres (predominantly fruit and vegetable stores), the proposal will not detrimentally impact on the overall function and viability of the nearest centres.

ITEM 5.1.1 Page 30 City of Salisbury Development Assessment Panel Agenda – 21 July 2015 Item 5.1.1 On market days, 191 carpark spaces will be available on site for patrons of both the market and Old Spot Hotel and bottle-shop, since then the facilities have been improved.

It is clear given the nature of the use and from the councils own observations of the market at its busiest operational times, that the demand for onsite spaces during the peak period, exceeds onsite parking availability. That said, adequate parking is available on both the subject land and adjacent Carisbrooke Park carpark to accommodate the peak demand of the market.

I note that since the councils own observations, the Markets general trade has softened and even though this is the case, internal parking has been expanded to ensure even during special events, the Market is able to ensure they can handle any traffic flow in and out of the property.

Whist the Carisbrooke Park carpark has not been encouraged as a carpark ancillary to the market, it should be noted that it is a public carpark and available to everyone. Outside, of the peak market period, onsite parking provision appears to be in balance with or exceeds demand.

The Department of Planning Transport and Infrastructure (Traffic Safety) in principle support the proposal, the current success of the market in handling “Traffic Safety” should have alleviated any concerns DPTI may have had.

The Market has submitted and adhered to an internal traffic management plan during the past 12 months of operation, which has been a success.

The applicant can see no valid reason for this application not to proceed to approval, based on the application itself and the performance of the market over the past 14 months in operation and over 4 years in the Salisbury area.


Mark Aldridge

Farm Direct community markets.


July 16, 2016

Farm direct Salisbury “merits argument”


market and some cars, x trail 050

“Farm Direct community markets have been successfully operating in the Salisbury area for well over 3 years”.

The markets huge success is evidence in its community support and by how well it is supported by the Salisbury small business community, this is exaggerated by the very fact upon relocation to our new site at the Old Spot hotel, our old location behind PALS liqueur has been able to also rebuild and attract continued support.

In the Salisbury area alone, this represents hundreds of local jobs and increased employment opportunities, while delivering support services for a variety of local small businesses.

The recent legal fight to undermine our market and its development approvals, has been trade and competition based and nothing to do with development issues or safety concerns. Development law was never written with the intention to undermine competition, but rather to ensure any change of use is in line with community expectations, and Farm Direct has the majority support of the local community.

Our recently approved development application as “Merit use” ought not to be overlooked, as Community support is the founding basis of the word “merit” in development law and planning.

Farm Direct has a successful track record in the Salisbury area for over 3 years, and have proven our ability to operate on the current site without any adverse effect to the location or surrounding area. In fact we leave no lasting imprint on the site or the local environment at all.

The fact that development law and planning has overlooked stalls, markets and fetes in their definitions, allowing the recent redefining to include a stall in the definition of the word shop, is due to the fact community events were never considered developments, but rather events, events of a regular basis, have been a part of the city of Salisbury history since its inception.

The location of Farm Directs present Salisbury Height’s Market at the Old Spot hotel is on private land, land that’s primary use is retail based, the zoning of “Open Space” is based more on the adjacent river and walk ways/trails, than the area built to have its primary use to be that of a car park for retail and hotel trading.

Before I touch on the merits of our application in an area presently zoned “Open Space” now we are considered non-complying, I would like to compare the merit of our application with the city of Salisbury’s planning objectives.

Salisbury City has a range or initiatives that drive its development planning agenda, these are based around a range of ideals that work in with the State’s current planning objectives, they include;

Salisbury – Sustainable Futures – Sustainable Futures is a local response to current and future needs of the Salisbury community. It seeks to address the unique challenges of Salisbury by developing and benefiting from a range of opportunities and partnerships.

Farm Direct offers a range of opportunities for the North, that interact well with every aspect of Salisbury’s future and current objectives, through job creation, environmental benefits, health and exercise, affordable access to fresh local produce, innovation in primary production, attracting community participation and helping bring more income to the city.

Farm Direct not only leaves the area it uses clean, we also ensure we remove litter from the surrounding trails and river banks.


Key Direction (1) Shaping Our Future – Develop our City as prosperous and progressive by attracting and sustaining increased business investment and by providing accessible learning opportunities to grow and support a skilled workforce.

Farm Direct community market helps employ over 100 people directly and as we grow, so does the employment opportunities, especially as an avenue to support and nurture new small and micro business opportunities in the area.


Key Direction 2: Sustaining Our Environment – Become a Sustainable City in which its residents and businesses embrace sustainability best practices as part of their day-to-day lives and activities.

Farm Directs stall holders, are growing and producing to suit customer demand, helping alleviate waste, we operate in an environmentally sustainable manner, and any excess produce is used to help feed the most vulnerable in our community.


Key Direction 3: Salisbury the Living City – Maintain a strong and vibrant community by providing safe and supportive environments that promote opportunity, healthy and creative lifestyles.

Farm Direct promotes healthy lifestyles, by getting the local community out of their homes, walking around our market area and meeting their neighbours. We promote using the local open spaces, and eating healthy by promoting and offering local fresh affordable produce to the Salisbury community.

We utilising local cooking demonstrations, involve the local schools and community groups at our Midweek markets, and encouraging community participation.


Key Direction (4) Salisbury Success – Remain a high performing and innovative organisation that strives to achieve excellence in every area

Community and Farmers markets are a sought after community asset by most suburban and regional councils, most present locations where markets like ours operate are in similar if not the same zoning that Farm Direct presently operate.

A similar market to ours has just been complied in the Gawler Township, located in a carpark on “open space” zoning, in that case, the council themselves are in partnership with the market, offering free land use, secure contracts and investing over $60,000 of local rate payer’s moneys a year ensuring their market has the best facilities and marketing.

Farm Direct offers all the same benefits without any costs to the Salisbury council or there rate payers, offering excellence in our operations and facilities, and assisting in ensuring the supply of fresh affordable produce to those rate payers living on or below the poverty line.

Farm Direct community markets looks forward to assisting the Salisbury community and the council in its future directives at every level.


Salisbury’s Policy & Planning Stream (2)

Your policy; “Health and Wellbeing Based on the premise that wellbeing covers physical, emotional and financial aspects of life, encompasses social integration, respect for diversity, community participation and a safe, vibrant and creative environment.”

Farm Direct fulfils all the aims of this initiative, assisting in financial assistance to those on limited budgets, the promotion of social integration and community participation, we promote diversity through offering produce from a diverse range of cultural and ethnic backgrounds, in a vibrant and creative environment. This clearly supports our original merit based application, and fulfils the merits required to be considered an acceptable form of any non-complying application process for the proposed location.


Goal 2.3 – Health and Nutrition “City of Salisbury”

Your position; There is increasing awareness of the importance of primary health measures, nutrition education and access to affordable healthy food – plus regular physical exercise – to offset preventable conditions such as obesity.

While this is an issue across communities, there is a need to ensure that people experiencing financial disadvantage – plus those who have not had the benefit of health and nutrition education – have the opportunity to learn about and access ‘healthy’ food and health behaviours (such as exercise).

There is the opportunity to provide these opportunities to children and families via schools, community centres, sporting groups, recreation centres and other community facilities.

It is here I believe Farm Direct is the best initiative in the city of Salisbury to fulfil these criteria from a single bi weekly event, with any added cost to the city and its rate payers.

  1. We work with local schools to provide opportunities for them to further their education relating to healthy eating
  2. We offer excellent facilities to promote family and community activities, by getting family’s to come to our market do their shopping as a family and embrace the local parks, walking trails and play equipment
  3. Farm Direct offers free cooking classes, tasting, and healthy eating behaviour.
  4. We provide access to affordable healthy produce, and promote healthy eating in general.
  5. We get regular feedback both on site and on line from our customers that support these statements, from feeling healthier, losing weight, and even more so seeing their children embracing healthy food over fast food and processed sugars.


Farm Directs strategy is to offer assistance and support to local small business and primary production, while promoting healthy eating and sustainability.

  1. Support the health and safety of the community.
  2. Ensure the services and infrastructure we provide meet community needs.
  3. Facilitate information and communication opportunities.
  4. Ensure local community resources are accessible to every sector of the community.
  5. Promote increased civic participation in community and Council activities.
  6. Identify and actively support and promote the recreation and leisure needs of the community.
  7. Enhance learning and employment opportunities across our community.
  8. Strengthen and unite the local community.



THE PRINCIPLES OF DEVELOPMENT CONTROL FOR “OPEN SPACE AND RECREATIONAL AREAS, includes several sections that support our present market model;

I have highlighted in bold where we directly adhere to the current “Open Space” zoning regulations.

Farm Direct leaves a clean foot print; we account for a small minority use of the land, and fulfil a majority of the directives driving present development planning.

2 (a) Facilitate a range of formal and informal recreation activities

(b) Provide for the movement of pedestrians and cyclists

3 Open space should be designed to incorporate:

(a) pedestrian, cycle linkages to other open spaces, centres, schools and public transport nodes

(b) park furniture, shaded areas and resting places to enhance pedestrian comfort

(c) safe crossing points where pedestrian routes intersect the road network

(h) Opportunities to be active and participate in physical activity

  1. Buildings in open space, including structures and associated car parking areas, should be designed, located and of a scale that is unobtrusive and does not detract from the desired open space character.

11 Development in open space should:

(a) Be clustered where practical to ensure that the majority of the site remains open

13 Landscaping associated with open space and recreation areas should:

(a) Not compromise the drainage function of any drainage channel

(b) Provide shade and windbreaks along cyclist and pedestrian routes, around picnic and barbecue

areas and seating, and in car parking areas

(d) Enhance the visual amenity of the area and complement existing buildings

(e) Be designed and selected to minimise maintenance costs

14 Development of recreational activities in areas not zoned for that purpose should be compatible with surrounding activities.

15 Recreation facilities development should be sited and designed to minimise negative impacts on the amenity of the locality.




Objective 1.2 Build a local community that is proud of Salisbury

Objective 1.4 Create a vibrant and active, event-filled Council area

Objective 2.1 Physical and social infrastructure to match population growth

Objective 2.5 Manage growth through the real connection of people and places

Objective 2.6 Local economic activity to create local job opportunities and generate increased local wealth

Objective 3.7 Create a safe, community environment

Objective 5.1 Support and encourage community teamwork

Objective 5.4 Create and support community partnerships that contribute to the

Farm Direct is an asset to the City of Salisbury, a draw card that attracts many into the Salisbury area and compliments the many innovative directives of its host city.

If the only objections are those of a market competitive nature, there is no reason to deny the development application based on the markets merits.

Farm Direct is well supported by the local community, it is in line with council and state government initiatives and brings people into the area, and the community together.

Mark Aldridge


Photos below are of the Market during trading, and show our Wednesday market entertaining local school children in an attempt to educate on healthy eating.


What is the process for approvals of a “None complying development” “Stalls”

January 24, 2016

What is Non-Complying development?

Stalls now must comply as shops, a group of shops as a shopping centre, so are now non complying developments, where they were merit use, so what is involved to hold a market, fete or fundraising stall?

Non-Complying developments are listed in the Development Plan and are land uses which are NOT envisaged or encouraged within a particular area

The lodgement of a Non-Complying application incurs a number of expensive fees, and sometimes years of debate and massed of red tape, and there are no guarantees at any stage nor is there any right of appeal.

The assessment process for a Non-Complying development application involves a number of steps.

The first step when a Non-Complying application is made is for the Council staff to undertake a preliminary assessment. From this, they will decide to either refuse the application or proceed with a full assessment.

If the application is refused at this time the applicant has no right of appeal against the decision

If Council agrees to proceed with full assessment of the application a report called a Statement of Effect is required to be submitted. This must be prepared by a qualified planner.

Qualified Planners can be very expensive and cannot always offer their service in a timely manner.

The second step, if the Council decides to proceed with the application, is for the Council planner to undertake a full assessment of the development. After Council planners have assessed the application they will write a report recommending either approval or refusal of the application to the Council Development Assessment Panel.

Once again there is no appeal process.

The third step is for the application, staff recommendation and report to go to a Council Development Assessment Panel meeting, where a decision will be made to support or refuse the application. Should Council refuse the development, the applicant has no right to appeal the decision

If Council supports the application then the Development Assessment Commission, the state planning authority, must also make a decision on the development

The forth step is for the Development Assessment Commission to assess the application. If the Development Assessment Commission does not support the application it will be refused. If the application is refused, the applicant has no right of appeal.

If the Development Assessment Commission approves the application, a Decision Notification Form will be sent to the applicant informing them of the approval and any conditions placed upon the development.

Imagine all this for a fete, fundraiser of garage sale.

Mark Aldridge

FARM DIRECT Community markets final compliance notes “Salisbury”

June 21, 2015


Attention; George Pantelos


Salisbury council Planning “Farm Direct Community Markets” 361/935/2015/38


The Development Act of 1993 is an Act to provide for planning and regulate development in the State; to regulate the use and management of land and buildings, and the design and construction of buildings; to make provision for the maintenance and conservation of land and buildings where appropriate; and for other purposes.


Representations relating to development plans, or change of use, ought to there for relate appropriately to the intention of the legislation.


When we go over the representations lodged and in particular those wishing to be heard on the matter, we find very little if any comments/representations that apply to the development/change of use application before the council.


Issues of retail competition and trade are not covered by the Act, so are there for not intended to be accessed in any application for development approvals, even more so in the case of minor change of use applications.


Important issues like traffic control and traffic and pedestrian movement, internally or outside any development or change of use applications are best determined by professionals like the dedicated department of transport and infrastructure, if would be inappropriate to expect a green grocer to dictate to the authorities such issues.


In 2 of the representations filed in relation to Farm Directs development applications, by both Nghia Van Lam and Ben Johnston, several issues are raised, none of which are either relevant to the application before the council, others are not a true representation of the circumstances.


It is clear than in both circumstances the representations are not relevant to the development applications, so are invalid under the legislation, in each respect the council would have better dealt with these using its own discretionary powers awarded to it be the Act, if said powers were able to be applied.


“I note council have accessed these representations as “Valid” in their own hand writing, as the party affected, I find it hard to believe such an assessment is in line with the Development Act.


Considering this fact, one would have to consider that the City of Salisbury feel they have the implied power to restrict trade and consumer choice in the retail trade, if that be the case, I would appreciate some direction as to from where those powers are awarded.”


If we take both of these representations and remove comments of a personal nature, unfounded comments like “Food requirements not being met” and “They have opened 2 markets in the area” reasons relating to competition and trade, or what produce is being sold and where it is being sourced, which are all irrelevant to the application before the council, it leaves no content worthy of debate by any development panel.


Representations must be based on the criteria set by the Act, none of the representations asking to be heard achieve that, so council indeed ought to have the legal ability to proceed with finalising our application.


Council must not lose sight of the basic facts, Farm Direct has operated in the area for nearly 3 years, without any issue of compliance, so a relocation application that asks only for a change of use approval, ought not raise any debate relating to trade or issues of a competitive nature, let alone Farm Directs internal management or adherence to local food legislation.


If legislation indeed took into account issues of trading restrictions, it is Farm Directs position such issues would be determined by the local consumers, and we believe they have voted in our favour.


The Act, only allows for debate relating to the developments effect on adjoining properties, the City of Salisbury development plan, traffic flow and internal vehicle and pedestrian movement, along with compliance with Heritage SA and DPTIs awarded interests.


We believe we have met all those guidelines and if council were not being hindered by invalid representations, that our application for change of use would pass council scrutiny.


I will reply to each representation lodged for further clarity;


  1. Folland; the matters raised in this statement of representation relate to pathways on council land, that MAY require upgrades due to increased traffic (has not asked to be heard)


Farm Direct has little to no control of the way in which the public enjoy council facilities, should more people start to use a council facility; this issue would be outside the scope of our application to the council.


Farm Direct is happy to monitor this issue an collate feedback from its customers and work with the council in respect to upkeep.


  1. Nghia Van Lam “Salisbury Fruit Bowl”; this representations attempts to raise a variety of concerns which can be listed as such (has asked to be heard);


  1. Unfair to local business (irrelevant to the application)
  2. Farm direct have 2 markets Parafield/Salisbury (incorrect and untrue) (irrelevant to the application)
  3. Parafield opened 1 year ago (incorrect and untrue) (irrelevant to the application)
  4. Farm Direct does not support local farmers (Incorrect and untrue) (irrelevant to the application)
  5. Farm Direct lie’s to the public (slander) (irrelevant to the application)
  6. 70-80% of product sold is from the Adelaide produce market (irrelevant to the application) (Incorrect and untrue)
  7. Farm Direct is a scam (slander) (irrelevant to the application)


Not one of these statements is backed by evidence, none of them are relevant to the development application and Farm Direct can prove with evidence that not one of these statements is true.


Farm Direct opened it original market in Parafield in October 2012, the market was relocated only 5 weeks ago to the Old Spot hotel, should another market have opened on our old site is both out-side development issues and or the control of Farm Direct.


Unfair to local business, relates to a perceived drop in sales, which could be applied to our ability to perform better in the food industry, again outside development planning legislation, which does not cater for trade restrictions of any kind.


Farm Direct is not a scam, does not lie to its customers and other issues raised, are best described as liable, and relate in no way to the application before the council.


  1. Ben Johnston “George & Bens Fresh food market”; raises a variety of concerns of a similar nature (has asked to be heard);


  1. It is not a farmers market (Farm Direct is not a farmers market) (irrelevant to the application)
  2. Farm Direct buys from Adelaide produce market (irrelevant to the application)
  3. Farm direct are retailers (irrelevant to the application)
  4. There is not enough parking.
  5. There is not proper structure (Incorrect and untrue) (irrelevant to the application)
  6. Council food and safety guidelines are not being met (Incorrect and untrue)
  7. Farm Direct has affected his business (irrelevant to the application)
  8. Farm Direct would hurt employment (Incorrect and untrue) (irrelevant to the application)
  9. Traffic is spilling onto Main North road (incorrect and untrue)


None of the issues raised relate to development planning, other than the issue of traffic spilling onto Main North road, so I will address that issue first, during the first 5 weeks of operation at the Old Spot, never once has traffic spilled over onto Main North road.


The department of transport DPTI, have both studied and attended the markets to check on this issue and have reported nothing that supports this statement, and have since supported the markets compliance.


Each week from the first day of trading we have modified traffic flows within the site parking area to ensure it creates no adverse spillage onto Main North road, once overflow parking is finalised and we can start operating on Wednesdays, vehicle flow on site will be made even easier, but even during our busiest times we have avoided any interruption to traffic on the Main north road.


All the other statements made are incorrect and without substance and appear to relate to issues of commerce, and have no impact on Farm Directs development planning applications, and Farm Direct can supply evidence that supports our position.


Farm Direct has operated for nearly 3 years, in which time both Parafield Airport limited and the Salisbury council have regularly carried out on site and compliance inspections, without any concerns being raised, all stall holders and the market management comply with all statutory requirements and business registrations, and always have.


  1. Leo and Chris; Fully support the market (has not asked to be heard)


  1. Teresa Evans; Raises the only concerns relating to our application before the council, all of which have been supported or adopted by our application. (has not asked to be heard)


DPTI and Farm Direct have agreed to certain traffic flow issues raised by Mrs/Miss Evans, so the application covers this representation.


  1. Anthony and Francesca Sorrenti; Fully support the market (has asked to be heard)


Their representation relates to parking on Brisbane drive, and its impact on local traffic.


Farm Direct has taken photos of the street for two weeks on an hourly basis, 9.00 am, 10.00 am and 11.00 am during market operations, and found no parking issues that are the result of the markets operation.


Farm Direct does not oppose signage to restrict parking during the operation times of the market, however has been unable to confirm any issue exists, as aforementioned, we note that the street in question is a long way from the market and people may be utilising it to access the adjacent park.




Farm Direct can see no reason covered by any of the lodged representations that can limit the ability of the council to provide final planning consents, within the scope of the development legislation and its applications to planning procedures.




Traffic Management; Farm Direct concurs with the assessment of DPTI and will comply with their directions.


Insurances; Farm Direct as site managers have public liability already in place, and ensures all stall holders operating on the site are also covered by appropriate insurances.


Control of Waste; Each stall holders is responsible for the removal of waste from the site, and Farm Direct staff ensure customer bins are provided and waste is removed, and are contracted to ensure the site is maintained.


Wastewater; All water used on site (minimal) used for cleaning or hand washing is collected and disposed of, off site, as per health and safety guidelines.


Food Business Notification; All stall holders are contracted to have all food accreditation, in line with the Food Safety Standards, and most if not all of our stall holders were recently inspected by your council.



Mark M Aldridge

Founder “Farm Direct community markets”






Renato Castello “Journalist of the Sunday Mail”

June 14, 2015

To Renato Castello “Journalist of the Sunday Mail”

Regarding your article; “Pop up road stalls anger Adelaide Green grocers”.

Farm Direct markets has been trading in the Salisbury area now for nearly 3 years, the move to the new location at Salisbury was to improve our facilities, not to open a new market, so I find it hard to understand why the article in question was written.

The two objectors, both frequent markets to clear their stock, but I suppose this fact was never considered, neither were the facts explained to you in our conversation, I find it hard to even believe you were listening to what I had to say, do please never call me again.

Farm Direct is a registered business that pays rent, taxes and insurances, as do all of its stall holders, you already knew all this when you wrote the article, because I told you.

The smaller farms supported by our markets are doing it hard, they also have families, staff, rents, insurances, mortgages, utilities and taxes to pay, and since when was there GST on food stuffs, and if there was, I am sure they would also have to cough up.

How you have called us a pop up market after nearly 3 years of regular trade two days a week, is beyond my comprehension, let alone the article being presented in such a way as to undermine our great markets and what they are trying to achieve.

I could be led to believe you are an Australian with children, and would have hoped our fight to ensure they will have access to fresh local produce into the future, would be one you and your editor might just respect.

I note Andrew Dimasi in the article says “We are over-shopped here and we’ve got Aldi coming,” he said. “There’s going to be a lot of product and at the end of the day it’s the grower who suffers, they won’t be able to get enough for their product.”

I fail to see how closing a market that allows the farmers and producers to get a fair price for their produce, will benefit the growers, I doubt Aldi are going to pay them more than they receive from dealing direct with their customers.

Oh yes, Dimasi wants to be the middle man in the deal, further eroding the farmers income, great person to interview on Farmers behalf.

Farm Direct took years to build by volunteers that did not wish to see Australia become a net food importer, and has always been all about support of our farmers and producers, to take that way, would be a swift kick in the farmers direction they can ill afford.

To even consider such a great market would be shut by the self-interest of two small on sellers, who appear to have forgotten just how many people rely on their employ as a result of the market would be a travesty.

The markets huge success clearly shows how the local community have voted, and the fact we have assisted in new farms being planted where the trend is the closure of Australian farms, might have seen you side with us in your article, or at least les bias.

I for one would like to see a little more balanced reporting on issues like this in the future.

Next time you even consider doing an article that affects so many lives, just maybe speak with the real stakeholders, the stall holders themselves, or even try a few of our thousands of supportive customers.

You have all but accused our many stall holders, over 100 in total of being tax dodgers, or simply dodgy traders, and that is not the case I can assure you. They are damn hard working honest people that simply wish to pay their overheads, keep their homes and farms and put food on the table.

As Market management I can prove every single one of them is fully compliant in every respect, but judging by the quality of your journalistic skills, I doubt you would let the facts get in the way of your story.

I would remind you of a speech from a man you might know, he was once considered the “Dean” of your profession “John Swinton” of the New York times, the speech was made at his retirement dinner, but I doubt you will have bothered to read past the first time I questioned your motives.

Mark Aldridge

Founder of Farm Direct community markets

FARM DIRECT Community markets MOVES from parafield to SALISBURY

June 11, 2015

“To grow any good business, one must embrace change”




Having dealt with development planning and compliance issues for markets over the past few years, I want to clear up a few of the things that forced the move of the markets from Parafield to the new upgraded facilities at the Old Spot Hotel Parafield.

There are certain requirements expected of food markets, access to toilets from the advertised opening times, and during set up times, appropriate insurances, adequate parking and traffic control, disabled access, safe ground cover, food safety etc etc.

Loose rubble, pooling water, muddy car parks are issues that would not pass scrutiny under development planning and food safety legislation, let alone the resulting traffic congestion and the dangers associated with that. New vehicle access cut ins were never finished, neither was the car parking or the ground cover, we were not even afforded rubbish removal.

“All these issues would be demanded under development planning standards and indeed were demanded by Parafield Airport Limited.”

I brokered the deal for the old Parafield site with the Airport Management, with the understanding the site would be brought up to scratch by the land owners in a timely manner. We were paying top dollar, for what was a vacant unused piece of land with no facilities, so I had every right to demand the development promises were met and to ensure the safety of both stall holders and customers, my job as the founder.

There were a host of other issues that required addressing,like toilet access and food hygiene, but for the sake of an overview, I will leave those issue to the authorities.

The old site is in breach of development planning and would have no chance in hell of passing the usual council guidelines, it is partly my fault the approvals were issued before compliance was met, because I wanted the market to survive. I did that with the understanding the many issues would be sorted by the site lease holders.

The management team, worked even harder to bring in money for the land owners so they could cover the costs of the works needed, not by increasing stall holders fee’s but by donating our time as volunteers, with Mark the founder covering marketing costs out of his own pockets.

When the land owners continued to ignore my pleas, in the best interests of the stall holders, our customers and the public in general, I brokered a deal for a better location, lower rental, better facilities, power, parking upgrades and the like, and I make no apologies for my actions.

We have had a few uninformed people question why we made the decision to move on-line even some of the stall holders I have supported for years spreading untrue rumours as a result of being misled. 

We would be crucified if I ignored these issues and the market was shut down, or some one was seriously injured, when the second person was taken to hospital after a fall, The founder acted quickly and decisively finding a great location and made the move.

Any market opened on the old site, will have very little chance competing on a level playing field unless it attends to the aforementioned issues. Our management team and our volunteers, have no other motives other than protecting the best interests of our stall holders and our customers, we are not driven by self-interest or financial gain.

Our new market opened on the 23 rd at the Old Spot hotel with appropriate approvals and insurances; we are now larger than ever before with room to expand, increased parking, better facilities, bitumen as ground cover, and correct services one ought to expect from a professional market operation.

A majority of our Parafield stall holders moved with us, and maintained all the best farms, adding many more local producers, at the same time lowering the wholesale content of our market.

Rumours that very few stall holders have moved with us, are being used to undermine our good name, and convince stall holders to move to the old site, which says more about those spreading them, than any concept of honesty..

Those we did not opt to bring with us, for a variety of reasons including continued opposition to our Australian made and grown rule or as a result of regular warnings from food authorities, have now set up on our old site, which is great for the general public’s free choice, as long as they are well aware Farm Direct is no longer interested in managing the site while it refuses to ensure public safety concerns or our motto of only allowing fresh Australian produce

Farm Fresh Parafield, is not a registered business and at the stage of writing this article, is neither insured nor compliant, the wholesalers on site have already started offering imported produce for sale.

Farm Direct will stick to speaking the truth, working in an honest and transparent manner as we always have, we will open with a full market of experienced operators, and so many familiar faces. We will continue doing what we always have, as everyone who attends will see, the only thing this spit has changed is we will only open at 80% capacity, not because we lack stall holders to fill the market to capacity, but because the split will temporary affect our customer base, and I won’t have that adversely affecting my growers.

With that point in mind, we will open at the same size as the old site, and build to a larger market than ever before over the first few weeks.

Parafield’s old site is now in the past, and I wish to leave it there, it is onward and upward for Farm Direct from here, and we will use our skills to open even more markets over the next few months, and I am sure all our farmers and producers as well as our customers will be impressed with our growth, because we will remain true to our core values every step of the way

We currently have approvals to operate in Marden, Blake’s-Crossing and have applications in for several other locations.

Australian only fresh produce at affordable prices.

Farm Direct Markets SA….How you can help!

November 25, 2012

I need your help please.

I have put a lot of work, many hours and a little more money than I can afford into doing all I can to support our struggling farmers and growers, the concept of “Farm Direct” Markets for the suburbs are well received by the community, and a great help to our producers.

It all started with a rally to get people to buy local, which was held on 25th of August, costing me many of hours of work and over $1000 in costs, thousands attended, but many local growers were told not to attend, seems self interest in the Industry was more powerful than I could have known.

The outcome was a huge rally, thousands of people, but those producers who endured the pressure and attended on the day, sold out of produce before we ran out of customers.

The community wanted access to cheap local produce, they want to support our farmers and producers, and the growers loved the idea of having places to sell their produce for a fair price, so they could pay their bills and stay on the land.

“Our nation needs to stand up for its long term fresh food future in any event”

The Ideal of “Farm Direct” became a reality, and the first Market opened up in Enfield on the 15th of September, only to be met with council opposition, in their words from pressure from the local retail industry (Coles/Woolworths) seemingly unhappy that their goal to own 100% of the market between them would be hampered by these new markets.

Gawler Markets were not enduing the same issues, as it was out of town, and more so based on the “Farmers Market” tradition, to explain; “Farm Direct” is about supporting farmers and growers, in where they can work together to sell both, their own and neighbouring farms produce.

Council red tape, slowed the new market concepts growth, complete redevelopment of whole shopping complexes, was total overkill, and we simply refused to comply. They even tried to close the new market based solely on the fact customers were provided with samples of the produce, because what if we dropped the knife used to cut up the fruit and veg, even though we met all the health and safety requirements, seems a tap 10 feet away, needed to be replaced with each stall holder having its own water supply?

Enfield and Gawler remain, and as of the 23rd of November we now have “Salisbury Farm Direct” & “Hindmarsh Farm direct” markets, Salisbury is the best option to grow to meet the demands of the north, simply based on area, infrastructure and parking, but we need help!

To market such an Ideal is a financial Burdon, we can’t achieve in the short term, word of mouth will grow the market, but we are left with one important issue to address, the Riverland growers hardest hit by government mediocracy, need to bring larger quantities, to make it profitable for them,, and state government red tape, does not allow then to return with unsold produce, so we need to ensure the community is aware of the markets existence.

Once we have all these markets up and running, we will be able to ensure that all south Australian farmers or growers in need, have a place to sell their fresh produce, therefore ensuring their survival on the land, and their ability to resist take over by foreign investors, and avoid dodgy growing contracts.

This will be a huge win for the state as a whole, we protect the long term viability of our growers, and the community gains access to the best produce at affordable prices, and combined with the existing “Farmers Markets” we can sure up our food bowl for future generations.

To finalise this we need the support of the media, the people and eventually the government and local councils, once this is achieved, it will become a blueprint for other states to follow.

Please show your support, write and spread media articles, talk back radio, printing up flyers, letting friends and family know, sharing our social networking pages, writing letters to the editor, tell people how cheap and fresh the produce is, and coming along to any of the markets, there are no losers with this concept, other than the duopoly who are there to feed only corporate greed and inferior imported produce.

GAWLER; Gawler park open air market 485 Main north rd. Evanston Sundays 7.30am until 1.00pm

*ENFIELD; 9.00am every Saturday 445-449 Main north rd. Enfield (Enfield plaza)

HINDMARSH; Opened on the 23rd November to run every Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 9.00am until 4.00pm corner of Manton st & South Road, our smaller market until we access the local councils position


*SALISBURY; Opened 24th November 2012 Parafield Airport, from 8.00am until 2.00pm every Saturday, expanding on demand.


Mark Aldridge “Independent Candidate”

08 82847482 / 0403379500