Market delights at the Southside Souk

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People make Glasgow — and people from around the world make Glasgow even better.

That’s the mantra behind Claire Bell and Mel Grossman’s project The Southside Souk — a new multicultural market aiming to show off the city’s diverse population.

The first souk event is on Saturday, 12-5pm at the Old Barn in Pollok Park, and organisers are marking Refugee Week by donating optional donations on the door to the Scottish Refugee Council.

Mel, who runs the middle eastern Habibi Kitchen, told The Extra: “I love travel and different cultures, but when I moved back to Glasgow from London three years ago, it was quite hard to find people from varied cultures selling their stuff.

“There are lots of markets with traditional Scottish products, but other than Govanhill Baths — which has a lot of different organisations and cultural events — there just didn’t seem to be a place for people of different backgrounds to showcase the products they were making.

“The Southside Souk is a bid to recognise all the different cultures in Glasgow, and celebrate them — celebrate what multiculturalism can do.”

As well as Mel’s middle eastern delights, the first market will include Lebanese food, Iranian printed bags, Indian art work and Japanese crocheted toys.

Afrodeesia and David Barbarossa will be providing African and world music throughout, and South African library charity The Bookery will be selling their wares.

Mel added: “We thought that Refugee Week would be a great time to start, and if it’s successful, we’d like to make the Southside Souk a monthly event, choosing a different charity each time so that it continues to have a social aim.

“The first is all about those who have already settled in Glasgow — even people who have been here for several generations — and the culture they bring with them.”

For more info on Saturday or upcoming events, visit the Southside Souk Facebook page.