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Norwich fried chicken restaurant Woolf & Bird announces its closure

PUBLISHED: 09:20 04 January 2018 | UPDATED: 07:37 05 January 2018

Woolf & Bird in Norwich has closed.  PHOTO: Nick Butcher

Woolf & Bird in Norwich has closed. PHOTO: Nick Butcher

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The owner of a city centre restaurant has announced its closure.

Felix Rehberg and Francis Woolf of Woolf & Bird. Photo from Emily RevellFelix Rehberg and Francis Woolf of Woolf & Bird. Photo from Emily Revell

Francis Woolf of Woolf & Bird inform customers via Facebook that the fried chicken restaurant had closed its doors for the final time.

The Exchange street-based business, owned by Mr Woolf and his business partner Felix Rehberg, opened in March of 2017.

Mr Woolf said: “To all our valued customers, friends and supporters, it is with a heavy heart we announce the closure of Woolf & Bird.

“Woolf & Bird began three and a half years ago with a borrowed gazebo, a fryer and a little help from my friends. Since then we have had fantastic reviews and endorsements from C4 Sunday Brunch, Kano, Dizzee Rascal, Kool G Rap, Pete Rock, CL Smooth and from the majority of the wonderful people of Norwich who have eaten with us.

Woolf & Bird Picture: Louisa BaldwinWoolf & Bird Picture: Louisa Baldwin

“When we took on the large site at Exchange Street, we only saw big things, but existing as an independent, ethical fast food restaurant in such a large space was not sustainable.

“We found ourselves competing with chain restaurants, whose corporate structure and funding mean they can weather the tough times, whilst some independent outlets suffer and die. Sadly we have become a casualty of this.”

He added: “The support from you all is what kept us going for almost a year and we wish we could continue to supply you all with good chicken, music and cocktails; but as with all things money has played its part and the kitty has run dry.”

Additionally, the post provided Mr Woolf the opportunity to stress the importance of supporting local, independent businesses.

He wrote: “Support your independents: clothing shops, restaurants, market stalls, coffee shops, record shops, because if you don’t you will lose them. No one wants to live in a city that is basically one big shopping mall.”

He also reassured customers that Woolf & Bird’s sister restaurant on Nelson Street, Woolf & Social, would remain open and “continues to grow”.

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