Discovering what Leeds has to offer
You’ve probably seen that we relocated to Leeds city centre late last year, so we decided to task our work experience student Tori with finding some great local businesses for us to enjoy. Take it away, Tori!
After spending my first week of work experience at Harris settling in and learning the ropes of marketing, the team asked me to spend my second and final week researching nearby businesses for a project which would allow me to hone my new-found skills across each of the marketing disciplines.
I spent the week discovering businesses in the area, and interviewing and photographing people from the three which stood out to me the most: Too Damn Loud, Ministry of Food and Hungarian Traditional Food.
Too Damn Loud
Peter has been trading in Leeds Kirkgate Market since 1974, and has watched it grow over the last 40 years. Starting his career at the market by selling textiles from an outdoor stall, he’s evolved with the iconic Leeds landmark, now selling music from an indoor stall, Too Damn Loud.
He’s been buying and selling CDs, DVDs and vinyl records in Kirkgate Market for more than 25 years, and his passion for music has driven him to continue running the stall. Over the years, Peter has seen footfall in the market fluctuate, and he hopes that the new hotel being built nearby will bring some new customers to the venue.
With no favourite genre himself, you’ll find Peter’s stall playing a wide variety of songs drawing in lovers of all kinds of music.
Ministry of Food
Also based in Kirkgate Market is Jamie’s Ministry of Food. While service manager Chris has been a part of the cookery class for four years, Ministry of Food has been in the market since 2010, teaching people new and healthier ways of cooking, and keeping cooking skills alive.
Chris recently spent eight weeks with a group of students from Leeds City College to show them that healthy meals are simple and easy to make at home, from easy-to-buy ingredients. Making the most of the cookery school’s location, Jamie’s Ministry of Food uses the stalls at Kirkgate Market as suppliers of meat, vegetables and spices to show that healthy food can be cheap.
Personally, Chris wants to continue teaching people to cook for themselves, favouring the phrase “swap it, don’t stop it” – which means teaching people to cook healthier alternatives to our favourite takeaways and ready meals. The aim is to empower people and give them the practical skills to make small changes to their diet that can have longer term benefits to their health.
Hungarian Traditional Food
Zoltan and Valeria bought their business, Hungarian Traditional Food, in June 2018 – but it wasn’t their first, and most likely won’t be their last. They’ve been cooking for most of their lives, and their passion drove them to open their business.
The venture began in their native Hungary, cooking their famous donut-like chimney cakes in bakeries on lakesides and beaches. Zoltan and Valeria then moved to London for five years to work, subsequently moving to Leeds to be close to their children.
They hold a promise that all of their food is cooked fresh and made to order. Conscious of customer needs, their food is either baked or grilled in order to reduce the amount of oil, making it that little bit healthier.
Every morning, Valeria stands outside the food cart with food samples to allow passers-by to taste their traditional dishes, in the hope of gaining more Hungarian food lovers, as well as new friends. Despite the truck offering a number of dishes, the infamous Langos is a firm favourite thanks to its authentic, nostalgic taste of Hungary.
This project not only helped me develop my skills, which will help me in my marketing career, but allowed me to discover a diverse range of local businesses. Leeds has such a varied offering, from food to music and anything in between. There’s so much more for me to discover in this city, and with this experience behind me, I’ll be sure to continue doing so.