Norwich’s first dedicated gluten free cafe could be open for Christmas

Louisa Kiddell and Tony Garrick hard at work getting the premises on Timberhill ready for their Glut

Louisa Kiddell and Tony Garrick hard at work getting the premises on Timberhill ready for their Gluten Free Café. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2015

Norwich's first dedicated gluten-free café could be open for Christmas, after permission to convert a city centre shop was granted.

Louisa Kiddell and Tony Garrick hard at work getting the premises on Timberhill ready for their Glut

Louisa Kiddell and Tony Garrick hard at work getting the premises on Timberhill ready for their Gluten Free Café. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2015

Louisa Kiddell and Tony Garrick, who run The Gluten-Free Shop at Hellesdon Barns, had asked Norwich City Council for the green light to transform an empty shop unit in Timberhill into a gluten-free café.

And officers at City Hall have given the go-ahead to the plan, so the pair are getting their renovations under way.

Mr Garrick said: 'There has been demand amongst our customers for us to open a shop in the city centre, and also for an eating establishment, so the new premises seemed like the logical next step.'

The pair are hoping to get the café, which would have a shop upstairs, open next month.

Ms Kiddell said: 'We're still developing the menu, but we are very excited that we will be able to offer something for everyone, whether people have coeliac disease or are following a gluten- or wheat-free diet.

'We also want to show people that gluten-free food can be as delicious and appetising as regular wheat, rye and barley-based foods, and in most cases you cannot tell the difference.'

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The café has been given permission to open from 8.30am until 7pm on weekdays and Saturdays and from 10am until 4pm on Sunday.

The Grade II listed building, which dates back to the 19th century, used to be Jennie Cross Brides, which closed last year.

The shop at Hellesdon Barns, which was highly commended in the EDP Norfolk Food & Drink Awards 2015 for best independent retailer, will remain.

While the new venture will be the city's first dedicated gluten free café, it will face competition.

In October, a dedicated gluten-free bakery stall called Kind Food opened on Norwich Market – with wares including cakes, tarts and pizza.

Are you setting up a new business? Call business editor Ben Woods on 01603 772426 or email ben.woods@archant.co.uk