Sunday, 19 September 2021

Shops open for business with another on way

TWO new shops have opened in Duke Street, Henley — with a third about to follow suit nearby

TWO new shops have opened in Duke Street, Henley — with a third about to follow suit nearby.

Spoon is an independent café and delicatessen trading from the former Noa Noa womenswear premises and the Best Turkish Barbers has opened at the former Precious Love jewellers a few doors away.

Mother and baby shop JoJo Maman Bébé will open its new store in Market Place next Friday.

Spoon is run by Cindy Gillett and managed by Annie Gray, both from Remenham, while chef Greg Lewis was previously executive chef at Phyllis Court Club.

The café sells coffees and blended drinks plus a range of cakes and salads, sandwiches, hams, olives and cheeses. It also serves breakfast.

Mrs Gillett said: “We’ve been swamped with customers to the point where we’ve been out of seats at times.

“Everyone has been very supportive and given us great feedback. They’re saying it’s just what Henley needs, which is a very encouraging start.”

The barber shop is run by Gokhan Gezen, from Reading, where his uncle runs Istanbul Barbers in Caversham Road. He had been working in the salon for four years and wanted to start his own business.

Mr Gezen said many of his uncle’s customers came from Henley so he was confident there would be demand. He currently employs one stylist, Ale Neik, who has just moved to the UK from Turkey.

The shop offers haircuts and wet shaves using a hot towel and a straight razor, which are traditional in Turkey.

Mr Gezen said: “We’ve only been open three days but we’ve had quite a lot of customers so I’m happy. I’m looking forward to running my own business.”

Precious Love shut in April after a decade while Noa Noa closed in May. Both shop owners said the businesses were no longer viable due to declining footfall and rising rents and business rates.

JoJo Maman Bébé will stock baby and children’s clothes, a maternity collection plus nursery products, gifts and toys.

It will be officially opened by Mayor Julian Brookes and the shop will be offering goodie bags to customers while JoJo mascot Eloise, a HY Citroën van, will be part of a roadshow team giving away hop-a-long bunny balloons and stickers.

Laura Tenison, founder and managing director, said: “Henley has long been on our agenda after receiving lots of emails from young families wanting us to open but finding the right location took time.”

The store is in the former home of CC, formerly known as Country Casuals, which was part of the collapsed menswear chain Austin Reed and closed in June.

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