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Mikel coffee company planning to open in Canterbury city centre

A global coffee chain wants to open a branch in Kent.

Greek firm Mikel has its eyes set on the former Kennedy's shoe shop in Sun Street, Canterbury which closed in 2017.

Plans to transform the unit into a coffee shop have been submitted to the city council, with the property's marketing department saying its location on an "awkward" street creates "limited scope" for retail opportunities.

Kennedy's when open in 2017
Kennedy's when open in 2017

If it were to be approved, it would add to the ever-expanding list of dozens of coffee shops operating in the city centre.

Seating would be across two floors and food snacks would be sold, as well as hot and cold drinks.

With a goal to "deliver only the best every day", the Greek firm has more than 180 outlets in its homeland.

Since forming in 2008, Mikel has expanded to five continents, with stores in Cyprus, the United Arab Emirates and the US. It has two shops in London, but company bosses are now looking to begin branching across the country, starting in Canterbury.

Mikel is set to open in Canterbury (15495558)
Mikel is set to open in Canterbury (15495558)

Planning agents state that by becoming a coffee shop, the original Tudor building will not be at risk of becoming a vacant eyesore once again.

"The scheme looks to offer a long-term sustainable use following the decline of retail in our high streets," they said.

"This small section of Canterbury has seen a slow change to providing food outlets within the area, which provides a use and vitality to the setting."

They go on to state that "bringing a vacant unit in such a prominent location back into use will be extremely beneficial to Canterbury".

Kennedy's shop shop in Sun Street pictured in about 1910 with owner Bert Kennedy (left)
Kennedy's shop shop in Sun Street pictured in about 1910 with owner Bert Kennedy (left)

The annual rent for the shop is £42,000.

Kennedy's shoe store had been in Sun Street for more than 150 years following its formation in 1865. But it closed its doors for the final time in autumn 2017.

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