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Nocturn Alley by night

Selling some…

agic may be the main ingredient in a Harry Potter inspired walking tour,

but it hasn’t always been plain sailing for the chief ‘muggle’, Hana Potter. After graduating from


She goes by the moniker of Hana 'Potter'

What’s in a name?

Her real name is Hana Umezawa but her nickname is Hana Potter. "The idea came from a 'muggle' who came on a tour and wrote it in an email. I thought it was great so I adopted it. Our guides also have Harry Potter monikers - Steph Black, John Lupin… "


Manchester University in international relations, in the depths of the recession, Hana simply couldn’t get a job doing the work she was passionate about. This was disappointing

and demoralising, and certainly not what she’d expected. Lots of young people today are in a similar position. "I really feel for you guys. It’s tough out there right now,” she empathises. With recent unemployment

figures reaching nearly 2.6 million, after another 20,000 under-25s added their names to the register, Hana has a point.

Muggle Tours is a successful London- based Harry Potter themed walking tour, which launched in the summer of 2011. FYM meets the 28-year-old ‘muggle’ behind the business

But that doesn't mean we should give up. Although it was tough, Hana decided to improvise, a skill that would later prove indispensable when delivering her carefully crafted script to a diverse, sometimes demanding, range of customers.

Everybody has a network Luckily Hana’s Japanese dad and Spanish mum were both tour guides in the 1970s. “My dad was asked by the Japanese consulate to take a group around London because there weren’t many Japanese people in London who were fluent in English,” she explains. “Mum got into it because it fit well with her schedule, so she began guiding for Spanish and South American tourists.” Faced with unemployment, Hana's parents suggested she

“ We all have

a network, it’s about

who you know and who they know… ”

give it a go. While having tour guide parents was certainly an advantage, she still had to come up with a new tour idea that she could deliver knowledgeably, with imagination and passion. “I grew up with Harry Potter and absolutely loved the magic realism of the books, and the films too,” she says. Unlike many book adaptations, Hana believes the films are true to JK Rowling’s

fresh young millionaire

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