Cafe plan for Bromley Heath

Published on: 24 Nov 2016

Road 

A NEW cafe and post office could open in Bromley Heath if planning permission is granted.

Quakers Road post office is facing closure when its owner retires, but local man Barry Hurkett wants to transform it into a classy cafe selling cakes, coffees, milkshakes and lunches.

The post office counter would be retained as part of the cafe, meaning the service for residents wouldn’t be lost.

Barry said: “Most people know me locally because I’ve lived here a long time, and I’ve asked people what they think about having a cafe here. Everyone has said it would be really good.

“The plan would be to have the post office counter at one side with a partition, so people aren’t queuing next to tables. We have everyone lined up to do the fit out if we get permission, so we’re just waiting for that.”

He said that he plans to keep the post office counter open while the cafe is being refitted by partitioning it off.

The new café is likely to be open from 8am to 5.30pm, six days a week, and will create jobs for two full-time and four part-time employees.

The existing post office had tried to operate as an off licence and newsagent, but is next door to a Premier convenience shop so struggled for business.

Leaseholder Altaf Hussain said he had run the business for two years but needed to retire because of ill health.

He said: “We have asked people when they come how they would like a cafe. Everyone has said it would be a good idea. People who drive a long way to work want to buy coffee to take with them.”

Lots of residents have voiced support for the idea of a cafe.

Neighbour Elizabeth Burden said: “I was worried that the post office counter was to be closed so I am very relieved that this is not the case.

“This should be a good position for a cafe/post office, and as the shop next door now sells everything it would be difficult for anyone to run it profitably as a newsagent’s again.”

Resident Jacky Keane said: “It could be a great business for those available after school runs, the clubs in the church hall, and the kids walking to and from Downend school and the Winterbourne school bus route. I really hope it takes off.”

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