A local market can help bring people together and make a place feel like a bustling community. Tottenham Green Market is approaching its second birthday in its current incarnation as a weekly affair. Rachel Ho caught up with the lady who runs things behind the scenes, Marika Gauci.
Photo supplied: Marika running the organic fruit & veg stall at the market.
Where did you grow up and what did your parents do?
I grew up in Cardiff, a fun childhood with brothers, bikes, dens and skateboards.
My dad was an immigrant who travelled to Cardiff from Corfu, Greece in the late 1950s. My mother is originally from Newport and they met when she visited Cardiff on a day trip. My father embraced Welsh culture and developed a very successful business as a building contractor.
Describe your relationship to Tottenham.
I moved to London in 1994, as a member of a musical band and finally settled on the borders of Haringey Green Lanes and Tottenham, where I have lived for some 18 years now. Tottenham is my second home, I work, socialise and hang out there. It’s great to feel part of a real community. People say London is lonely, but I always bump into people I know in Tottenham and it feels good.
Photo supplied: Market Day
How did you come to be involved with running Tottenham Green Market?
When I was running Chestnuts Market on Black Boy Lane, Rachel and Matt (of Craving Coffee) suggested I go for the job. I was hesitant at first, as it was a much larger challenge, but two years (or counting the trials, two and a half years later), I still love running the market and slowly watching it grow.
What are some of the challenges of running a market, particularly as a mother?
Running a market fits in nicely with being a mum. I can get all my work done whilst my daughter is in school. Occasional childcare problems on the Sunday, but I have the best staff and they are more than capable of covering.
I would say as a weekly market, it's all consuming, always thinking of the next event like the Haringey Food and Drink festival (now in its third year), birthdays, winter festivals, events, activities, new stalls, it's a balancing act - so for anyone, it can get hectic at times.
What advice would you give to women who want to start a market stall?
Don’t think about it too much - do your thinking on the stall. Start something, tweak it, talk to people. If something doesn’t work, try something else.
Photo supplied: Market Day
As a woman, how do you think Tottenham has changed? What would you like to see change?
I live on the fringes of Tottenham and I don’t have long-term experience of living more centrally in the area. That said, as a women I do feel safer in the area than its reputation suggests.
There is a very real and serious problem with poverty in the area, specifically with the long-term residents of the area and its minority communities. I would like to see this addressed and more equality between the more affluent new arrivals and the established residents.
Favourite thing to do in Tottenham?
The Beehive Pub, Craving Coffee, Loven Bakery, Tottenham Marshes, Downshill Park, Tottenham Green Market and our associated events, which are always fun.
Tottenham Green Market's 2nd birthday celebrations are this Saturday 18th March 2018.
Find out more about Tottenham Green Market: