Tuesday, 22 August 2017

Cafe set to become home once more

THE owner of the former Old Post Office coffee shop in Wargrave wants to return the premises to residential use.

THE owner of the former Old Post Office coffee shop in Wargrave wants to return the premises to residential use.

Tony Colborne has applied to Wokingham Borough Council to turn the former café into a two-bedroom home.

The downstairs would have two large reception rooms, a dining room, kitchen and study and upstairs there would be two bedrooms, a large dressing room and another study.

Mr Colborne, of Wyatt Close, Wargrave, closed the café in April after being told that he must restrict its opening hours.

He then put the business on the market for £649,500, saying it had an “enviable” location and was an “ideal lifestyle business”.

Two weeks later, he decided to sell the premises as a single residential property for £575,000.

Mr Colborne bought the premises in June 2008 and carried out renovations before running a florists and post office. In May 2009, the shops became an interior design business but this shut in July 2011.

His latest application says: “Since 2008, a significant cumulative loss has been incurred in the attempt to operate retail businesses from the applicant site.

“There are no retail shops on the entire eastern side of the high street. Some shops have previously been converted to residential use.

“The buildings opposite, adjacent and behind the existing building are used exclusively as residential dwellings and the high street is a predominantly residential area.”

Mr Colborne, who had a licence to sell alcohol at the café, said the restriction of opening hours made the business unviable. The business employed a full-time chef and six part-time staff.

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