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Grassroots street sales - Jumble Trails - prove a hit

Jumble trails are as much about getting communities together as selling unwanted stuff. Image: © Martina Randles, Jumble Trail

Think of them as car boot sales with a modern twist. To create a Jumble Trail, communities co-ordinate to set up stalls outside their houses.

The stalls are lined with vintage clothes, cakes, plants, toys or bric-a-brac. The joy, say organisers, is in both their simplicity and the way they nurture and celebrate community.

Trails are a chance to “explore the treasure on sale in your neighbourhood,” say organisers, and increasingly, towns and streets around the UK are doing just that.

The whole concept is coordinated online at providing visitors with a colour coded map to see what might be for sale. The Jumble Trail ‘champion’ decides whether or not to charge stallholders for registering on the trail, sometimes opting to raise money for a cause or to cover the cost of printing flyers. The power of technology is then harnessed, with the word spread through the website, email and social media as well as invitations, flyers, posters and word of mouth.

As people register online, a map is created to show who is selling what and where, and stallholders can even post pictures of their wares.

Like lots of mini car boot or garage sales combined, a Jumble Trail gets communities together too. Image: © Martina Randles, Jumble Trail

Founder Martina Randles said: “Stallholders are happy because they have sold their things and made some money, buyers are happy because they have found hidden treasure, everyone is happy because they have made some new friends, eaten nice food and enjoyed being outside in their community.”

The first trail she organised took places in Clapton, east London, in August 2013. Martina hoped that around 10 stalls on her street might sign up, but in the end, 100 houses in the area came on board.

“I was on a high all day,” she said of the day. “It felt as if we’d reclaimed the streets.”

Find out more, create a new Jumble Trail and view planned trails at

By Lucy

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