|LOST £80,000 IN 28 WEEKS - The now closed Clock Restuarant, Bridge Street.|
The news that the empty Thomas Cook shop unit in Bridge Street, Peterborough, set amongst closed and pop up short lease shop units is to be turned into a Pizza and Coffee outlet, follows hard on the news that Hathaways Pizza Chain is also opening in central Peterborough and that Carluccios' is according to sources, struggling to hit its financial projections. It cannot be more than eighteen months, since the unfortunate Clock Restaurant in Bridge Street, closed after a few months, with the owner Barry Blakesley sinking and losing his shirt, some £80,000, on his short lived venture, and the PCC scrooge like holding onto his £20,000 deposit.
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This is how we reported it at the time:
A Peterborough Restaurateur Barry Blakesley has dramatically pulled the plug on his new Restaurant THE CLOCK located just a few feet below the Peterbrough City Council Chamber, after debts of £80,000 had been racked up in just 28 weeks.
To make matters worse, the Council are to sieze a £20,000 cash deposit put down by Mr Blakesley.
The Clock Restaurant needed to turnover some £20,000 a month, says Mr Blakesley to break even but was running at a £6k loss, month on month. But the fault cannot be fully laid at Mr Blakesleys' door.
Within a month of signing a lease, Greggs the Bakers opened a cheaper copycat street cafe catering operation, with four staff as opposed to The Clock's regular roster of 15 people who all now find themselves out of work.
The restaurateur also blames a hike in business rates, which he thought was around £25,000 but turned out to be a £57,000 a year nightmare. He would seem to have a claim against those who financially advised him, in our view!
Mr Blakesley was however offered a years rent free, but with the need to fund a further £48,000 per annum for the rent bill alone, from March this year, he decided the game was up. It was never really on in the first place!What worries the PBROTrib, is that the council Barrista Cafe (serving Pizza) is also nearby, and its' been leaked that plans are afoot to close, and seal off, the arcade link from parking, disabled parking and the street behind the Town Hall after 6pm. Meaning that access to Pizza & Pasta and Cathedral Square generally from 6pm, will then entail a long walk, in one of the most mugger and theft prone areas of the City - all along Bridge Street, (or as Enterprise operatives who have to clear up the mess call it 'Vomit Alley') from the car park next to City Market.
We would like to think South Bretton resident Carmine Pacca who according to reports has the financial backing of his Roman relatives, for this latest Bridge Street project, is fully aware that his night time trade (as the THE CLOCK restaurant experienced), is as on TV, and featured in the COP SQUAD police reality series.
POLICE 101, Emergency 999, Crimestoppers 0800 555 111 & PBOROtrib NEWSDESK 01733 345581, E&OE