Alleway’s Confectionary started in August 2020 by Joshua Allerton and his family. This is how it all began…
My Origin Story
In 2020, our world flipped upside down.
*flashbacks to multiple lockdowns, Help Out To Eat Out, and freaking about that %$&?! Carole Baskin*
At the beginning of the year, I’d returned to university for the second time to complete my undergraduate degree. When we switched to online teaching, I completed my year and decided to postpone studies until the world returns to normal – whatever that is.
Plus, me and my partner discovered we were expecting a child with ONLY THREE WEEKS NOTICE!!
In August 2020 with a baby on the way, I decided now was the time to start a business. I mean, it can only get better – right?
I revisited my list of many ideas and spotted that there was still not a confectionary stall at Wolverhampton Market. I love sweets and cake (in moderation, of course) and so went all in.
The next five months were tough. Restrictions came and went. But, our customers stayed loyal and we worked hard to find the best deals on the market.
When talking to our customers, we found those with dietary requirements experienced huge barriers to the confectionary world. This frustrated me. It frustrated me even more when I found that vegan sweets had more flavour than “traditional” sweets.
Seeing the higher markup on these products solely because they were for people with dietary requirements tipped me over the edge.
During the January 2021 lockdown, we had some decisions to make. Do we:
- Return to the markets?
- Go online-only?
- Pack everything up and call it a day?
When exploring different markets across the country, I stumbled across a Facebook post:
My gut told me this was the perfect opportunity for us. Not only was the shop affordable, but we could finally serve our vegan community wholly and without confusion. Every product in our shop is vegan with plenty of gluten-free lines.
This is where we are now: a 100% vegan confectionary shop in Digbeth, Birmingham – part of The Warehouse Buildings ran by Birmingham Friend of the Earth.
On opening the shop, we set this mission:
To make leading an ethical and sustainable life more affordable and accessible for everyone.
Confectionary is a small step in that and will be the first step for many. Everyone is welcome and we love recommending products to your taste.
If you’re based in Birmingham, or ever about, make sure to visit us.
If you’re a bit further afield, our online shop is always open.