Strangers to open up two new coffee shops
PUBLISHED: 16:41 04 November 2019 | UPDATED: 16:42 04 November 2019
An independent coffee firm voted one of the best in the UK is to open two new shops in Norwich before Christmas.
Strangers, which has a roastery in Dove Street and a coffee shop in Pottergate, is expanding out of the Lanes - opening a new venue in 14, All Saints Green, opposite John Lewis.
It is aiming to open up the new coffee shop - selling takeaway and drinking-in coffees as well as light bites - next Monday in two-storey premises formerly occupied by the Clever Dicks coffee shop and hair salon.
It is also opening a 'grab and go' takeway coffee shop as a pop-up in a former jewellers in the Back of the Inns - they hope to open this before Christmas. The two new ventures are costing Strangers around a total of £50,000.
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Alex Sargeant, director, said: "It's tough on the high street but there are also opportunities too. Whereas people used to go to the pub at lunchtime, they now go to coffee shops. People are buying things on the internet and looking to the high street for their leisure and experiences and the supply of food and drink meets that need so coffee is in a good place.
"We are in our 10th year so we have waited a long time before expanding, we've helped a lot of other shops open and it makes sense now to do it for ourselves. I'm really excited."
He said the new shop in All Saints Green would focus on the downstairs area first as a coffee shop, offering the upstairs for business use and for students. He said they'd signed a lease for that for five years but that the pop-up in the Back of the Inns would be a temporary shop although if successful, they could look at opening it permanently.
"A lot of coffee shops have opened up and it's how sustainable they are, I think the good ones will stay. There are many more places available to rent now which has meant it possible for us to give it a go in another area."
He said the next investment would be in a new roastery. Strangers, which supplies wholesale too, was the only place in East Anglia to be named in the top 50 coffee shop lists in the UK earlier this year. It roasts its own coffee in the unit in Dove Street and sells coffee and a range of food such as pastries, smoked salmon bagels and cakes in Pottergate. The firm was founded in 2009 by Alex and co owner Samuel Maddocks with William Maddocks joining the team in 2014. Alex has twice been named in the top 15 in the UK Barista Championships.