Costa: a victory for people power?

Published on: 27 Oct 2017

A BRANCH of Costa that opened in a former bank in Downend village centre in the spring has shut suddenly.

The closure of the coffee shop, which took over the premises vacated by The Hungry Caterpillar play cafe, came overnight on Friday October 13. All signs were removed from the building.

A spokesman for the chain told Downend Voice: “As part of Costa’s ongoing property strategy, the store on Badminton Road in Bristol has closed and all team members will be relocated to nearby stores in the coming weeks. We would like to apologise for the inconvenience the closure may have caused customers and hope to welcome them into other Costas within the city.”

Many residents have hailed the closure after only five months as a victory for people power, saying that customers had remained loyal to the four independent coffee shops in the village: Melanie's Kitchen, Freshly Ground, Brownes and the Beehive.

Costa did not have to gain planning permission for a change of use as there had already been a cafe established on the site but parish councillors and others urged locals to back the existing outlets.

Sally Lockwood contacted Downend Voice to say the closure was: "a real David and Goliath story. I don’t know the full facts but it would appear that the local community stayed loyal to the small independent coffee shops."

This was echoed by many commenters on social media, although some said they had liked the Costa because it had more space for buggies and wheelchairs, accessible toilets and longer opening hours.

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