Trader Spotlight – Airolyn Hunt

August 28, 2013

Location: C15, C16, C19, C20

One of many stalls at Leicester Market showcasing the city’s diverse culture, Airolyn Hunt’s stall, specialising in Caribbean produce, is hugely popular on a day-to-day basis.

We spoke to Airolyn to find out more about one of the Market’s specialist stalls…

How long have you been trading at Leicester Market?
It’s going on to three years now. My brother lives in Leicester and I used to be in the Army.

When I left, I started doing little jobs here and there and I thought ‘I want to do something for myself’. My brother was working as a market trader in Birmingham, so I came up to see him and it was then that I knew I wanted to try it. I did and it’s how I got to where I’m at today.

The Army to the Market is quite a big jump…
It is a massive change, but the time has really flown by!

How has your stall grown over the years?
It’s grown massively. We’ve been really happy with how well things have developed. When I started, I only had one stall. Today, due to the range of stock and how successful things have been, I have four. I now offer more than I’ve ever done before.

How proud are you to offer diversity to Leicester Market?
Very proud, as I get a lot of shoppers coming through who tell me that a lot of what I sell, they can’t get anywhere else. That’s a great thing to hear, especially when you get a lot of people from different countries say how surprised they are that I sell a particular product.

What do you think makes Leicester Market so unique?
I think it’s the sense of community. Even though we’re all competing stalls, we’re all in it together and that’s wonderful.

What are your most popular products?
The fruit side of my stall is always popular, things like grapes, bananas and pineapples are always really good sellers. On the other side of my stall, I have Caribbean bread and that is also really popular.

I also stock a lot of spices, in addition to many drinks that you can get in the Caribbean or which reflect those unique Caribbean flavours.

How pleased are you to have a stall that reflects your roots?
I’m very pleased; my stall is very personal to me. In many ways, it’s that personal connection that keeps me going, so that I can get up early in the morning to set everything up. It also caters for people with a similar heritage, so when they come up to me and say that they can’t find this product anywhere else, it’s that too which motivates me.

Which days do you trade during the course of the week?
I’m here Thursday, Friday and Saturday.