Fruit Market HullPolly Checkland Harding
Fruit Market Hull is the name of Hull’s vibrant cultural quarter and the revitalisation of a historic area next to the city’s Humber Dock Marina – featuring places to visit, shop, eat and live, it’s a must visit.
The independent trading spirit that unites the restaurants, shops and attractions at Fruit Market harks back to the history of the area, which has been the site of a market since the 16th century; the name itself is a nod to the fruit trade that took off next to the waterfront in the 19th century. A circus, theatre and Wesleyan Chapel were all built here to facilitate this bustling hub; destroyed by aerial bombing in World War II, they were replaced in the 1940s and 1950s by the warehouses that still stand today.
These are now home to Humber Street Gallery – Hull’s only contemporary art space, established in 2017 as part of Hull’s City of Culture programme – and fellow creative beacons Studio Eleven, a workshop and gallery for printmakers and ceramicists, and Juice Studios, a print club, artist studios and project space. These sit alongside various independent boutiques: there’s bespoke contemporary jewellery from Oresome Jewellery, womenswear and menswear at 19Point4 and Tessies, specialist bridalwear from Ghost Orchid Bride, a huge houseplant collection as well as the Annie Sloane paint range at Plant and Paint, and the affordable art prints, cards and stationery at Form Shop & Studio.
Food and drink comes from the likes of Ambiente Tapas, with its impressive selection of sherries and locally sourced tapas dishes, and the Minerva, a family-run, 200-year-old pub which boasts views over the marina along with the smallest pub room in Britain. Casual bistro Butler Whites can be found in a former local fruit merchants with a stunning interior, while gin-obsessed cocktail bar Humber Street Distillery Co. enjoys a dark-wood bar and exposed brick walls, as well as over 100 varieties of gin, including bottles distilled on the premises. Community café Thieving Harry’s serves breakfast, brunch, lunch, dinner, booze and coffee in a converted warehouse with a down-to-earth vibe; alternatively, head to Tapasya for fine Indian dining with a twist.
There’s even a dedicated dinosaur museum, Dinostar. Fruit Market Hull is, after all, a well-rounded destination. What’s more, it’s all here, on the bank of Humber Dock Marina, just a 15-minute walk from Hull railway station.