THERE was a time when you couldn't move
in Nantwich for antiques shops, but
nowadays the new outlets in vogue are the coffee shops. (Charity shops are close behind - but that is another story.
In 2017 we have many new types of
shops finding they can attract customers and it would seem that in the
lead are ladies' hairdressing salons and then fashions shops.
I haven't done an actual survey
on this and someone who is in the survey business or who has time on
their hands may question my opinion.
Most of the coffee shops appear to be surviving
which suggests that
there is a need for them. But it seems strange that a small town like Nantwich - tourist magnet though it is - should need so many.
I mean, we are not
Chester, York, or any of the other tourist attractions, which - being much
bigger, of course - need a large number.
Although, since I first wrote this
item, I have found that many other towns have an awful lot of coffee shops.
At one time there was the
odd place that served coffee - apart from restaurants. Then, shops set up for one type of commodity
would open up an unused floor and sell coffee, with all the extras, of
Other shop owners, obviously having
done their market research, decided they could do the same and more and more premises followed suit.
There was a drive at one time for
upper floors to be used for accommodation - if the owners didn't want to
"live over the shop" there were plenty of people who did, it was argued.
I am not sure what became
of that. Clearly some people do live in flats in the centre of town,
although others are put off by the rowdies who invade the town at
weekends. For the record, this is being dealt with.
That is probably one
reason why some shop owners preferred to use the space upstairs for a
fact that even with so many coffee outlets there are times when you cannot
get a table for love nor money proves the need for the service.
there as a coffee shop on every street. Some streets don't have any. Pillory
Street has three.
When the local newspaper, The
Nantwich Chronicle, closed its Nantwich office in Mill Street, the premises were snapped up. Not for another office, but for a coffee shop.
One place that sells coffee is a
shop in name only. The Church Shop - more correctly the
Visitors' Centre - in the porch of Nantwich Parish Church. And on
Saturdays, the Parish Hall across the way
is the venue for local
organisations to hold coffee mornings . . .
Another church premises to serve
coffee is the Methodist Centre in Hospital Street. Formerly the
schoolrooms of the church across the road, it now houses both buildings.
One "coffee shop" goes
under the different name of a Tea Shoppe! A previous proprietor, when it
was called Inglenook Tea Shoppe, genial Bob Hope
(yes, that's his real name) told me he was the only tea shop in the county.
seems that to be able to use that description you have to sell at least 10
different teas as loose leaf. Those tea bags will not do. The
shop later (2012) became Molly's Tea Shoppe after having other owners in
Just for the record, the
pictures on this page are not an indication of the quality of the drinks on sale. They were placed
randomly as the page evolved and the size and shape of the images is simply according to how I took them.
When I was researching the coffee
shop phenomenon I asked for a list of coffee shops in the town to make
sure I wasn't missing any out. The source - I won't name them for
obvious reasons - said no, they didn't have a list. In any case, the
tended to come and go.
In February 2014, the one over Bratt's
ladies shop in Churchyardside did just that and closed.
Although it is named as
Teresa's Ice Cream Parlour, it lists coffee as one of a number of items
it sells, so I'm
including it in this list of coffee shops! Of course, all the "coffee
shops" have all kinds of drinks and food on their menues.
The latest coffee shop
(March, 2017) is Miss Marmalade's in Pepper Street. Off the top of my
head I'm sure it was two premises previously.