The final day has come: The last day of Singapore Sungei Road Thieves’ Market operation, 10th July 2017.
One of the ‘symbolic’ icons of Singapore is gone, forever.
Here’s my brief understanding of Thieves’ Market:
Thieves’ Market wasn’t called Thieves’ Market in the first place. In the early days, it was just a place for mainly Malaysians to sell their goods as it’s so near to the Johore-Singapore bus terminal.
One day, a man’s car tyre was stolen. To his surprise, he found it in this flea market.
Hence, there came the name ‘Thieves’ Market’.
Afterwards, whoever lost anything was said to have a higher chance to find the item back in this market.
Overall the years, I also heard that the peddlers were of great help to the police force for theft cases.
This is the story I heard. I don’t know how true it is.
Now, in order to give way for the new highway and MRT station, the flea market is forced to close permanently, affecting many peddlers, who are mainly elderly.
In memory of this 80-year-old historical icon, I am going to post some of the street photos of Thieves’ Market.
All photos were shot on film cameras. Enjoy!It’s such a shame that the future generation would not be able to experience the original Singaporean-style flea market.
What will happen to these vendors/peddlers?
There had been petition and campaign going on to urge the authority to preserve this ‘heritage site’. This part obviously failed.
But the plan to allocate the flea markets to an alternative place for the peddlers to continue doing what they do is agreed upon.
The peddlers are relaunching themselves at Golden Mile Tower (Little Thai), 6th floor on 15th July 2017.
Otherwise, some of them have simply decided to retire. Some of them have found shop-front/stall elsewhere, with financial aid from the government, to continue their businesses. While some of them are still feeling bleak about their lives.