‘We are not needed anymore’ - Norwich’s Gluten Free Shop & Cafe has closed

PUBLISHED: 09:45 22 February 2018 | UPDATED: 16:27 22 February 2018

The Gluten Free Shop & Cafe on Timberhill in Norwich has closed. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

The Gluten Free Shop & Cafe on Timberhill in Norwich has closed. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Archant Norfolk 2016

The Gluten Free Shop & Cafe in Norwich has closed.

Opened in 2015 the business, on Timberhill, was the city’s first dedicated gluten-free cafe.

Owners Louisa Kiddell and Tony Garrick made the decision to cease trading due to economic pressures and an increase of gluten-free products in supermarkets and restaurants.

They announced the closure of the business on Facebook.

Ms Kiddell said: “We would like to thank everybody for their support. Our mission was to provide a wide range of gluten-free and other free from products to everyone and be a safe place for coeliacs.

“Over the past few months we have noticed that there is a huge move towards gluten-free produce in supermarkets and the eating out choices have improved so much, and in the large part we are not needed any more - this can only be a good thing - and means we have succeeded in our goal.

“Sadly economic pressures have also contributed to the closure, the eating out choices are diluted by bigger businesses, you can buy gluten-free bread everywhere and we are unable to invest any more money into the company.”

She also apologised to customers with outstanding vouchers.

Ms Kiddell now plans to take some time out to reflect and return to her role on the coeliac committee.

Many customers are saddened by the closure.

Juliette Dixon said: “So sad to hear this news. As newly diagnosed coeliacs this was the first place we visited and it was here that we were greeted warmly. We always recommended it highly and visited every time we came up to the city, sadly not enough.”

Lin Dalton added: “Thank you for being there, you will be missed. I felt like I was in heaven when I first found your cafe and the upstairs shop.”

The closure follows the loss of several other independent businesses in the city over the last few months, including Woolf & Bird, Craft Burger and E Street Smokehouse.

READ MORE: Special report: Why are restaurants in Norfolk struggling?

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