Mrs Market is always a bit cringey to say to other people, but hey at least folks know what I do. From 2013 I ran the national Love Your Local Market campaign, which came out as a result of the Mary Portas Review of the High Street and now I’m on a new mission…… to digitalise markets.
Markets have always been in my blood. Growing up in Africa my earliest memories are of the hustle and bustle of Bar Beach Market in Lagos. One of my first entrepreneurial tests was making homewares for market stalls in London and my husband started working for his Uncle Frank, one of the last Antiques dealers of the Portobello Road, when he was eleven, to pay for a school ski trip.
I had already been working on Portas, High Street and related projects, having started a new community market near my home in Wiltshire and working with the County Town in a bid to become a Portas Pilot. The bid wasn’t successful but work continued to include setting up another new market, this time in partnership with the Unitary Authority. When the chance to apply for the Love Your Local Market job came up, I jumped at it.
Over the past couple of years I’ve been really lucky to work with some great people along the way….over at NABMA and with charities, local authorities and private companies, regenerating markets and making some special spaces.