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Blackstock Road greengrocer furious at unlicensed street stall selling Valentine’s Day gifts

PUBLISHED: 07:00 14 February 2017 | UPDATED: 09:16 14 February 2017

John Mackie in front of his greengrocer's shop in Blackstock Road. Picture: Dieter Perry

John Mackie in front of his greengrocer's shop in Blackstock Road. Picture: Dieter Perry

Dieter Perry

There was no love lost between a greengrocer and the two women who set up an unlicensed street stall selling Valentine’s Day gifts next to his shop.

A stall was set up in Blackstock Road selling Valentine's Day presents.A stall was set up in Blackstock Road selling Valentine's Day presents.

John Mackie, who runs White Brothers in Blackstock Road, was furious when he saw the tables on Sunday morning.

The former footballer accused the two women, who he has never seen before, of trying to nick his trade in the busy run-up to Valentine’s Day.

He told the Gazette: “We’ve got flowers in because it’s Valentine’s Day, but they’re selling chocolates and a teddy bear.

“If you’ve got £20 and you’re looking to buy something you’ve got a choice to make. But if they weren’t there they would just buy the flowers.”

The stalls were set up – without a licence – outside a neighbouring DIY shop and after John contacted Islington Council, street trading officers paid a visit.

“We all know it’s difficult but a couple of times a year you try and earn a bit of money, on Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day,” continued John. “If they can do it we can all do it.”

A town hall spokesman said: “An officer visited a street stall in Blackstock Road that was operating without a licence.

“The trader was issued with a warning and asked to pack up, which they did. We will continue to monitor the site as we do every day in high streets across the borough.”

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