Published: 09:39, 28 January 2021
| Updated: 10:04, 28 January 2021
A new Mediterranean bistro is set to open once lockdown is lifted.
The Coach House Coffee Shop, in New Romney, has been taken over by couple Hazel Thetford and Fredie Papadopoulos.
They have re-branded it The Coach House and will turn it into a restaurant serving Spanish, Greek and Italian food.
They are now spending thousands of pounds renovating the former coffee shop, including a new roof, new electrics, new floor and an overhaul of the kitchen.
They are also applying for an alcohol license.
Fredi will take on the role of head chef, whilst Hazel brings further experience in management and running her own successful cleaning business, along with providing front of house experience.
Although they are currently in limbo about when they will be able to open due to the coronavirus outbreak, takeaways might be available in the future.
'We are hoping once the situation is rectified, we can open with a bang...'
The couple already own Fredis' Grill & Taverna in Old Romney, which is currently providing take out food.
On buying a new business during a pandemic, Mr Papadopoulos, 40, said: "It is a lot to take on, and there are worries about the future. Everyone is in the same boat.
"But we are hoping once the situation is rectified, we can open with a bang.
"It will have a brasserie feel to it, and serve Mediterranean food. We are also planning on having our own blend of coffee that will only be sold here."
Funding for the couple's new venture was secured by specialist commercial finance broker, Christie Finance, with Craig Dickson managing the deal.
Miss Thetford, 34, added: "Christie Finance was recommended by a friend, and we couldn’t have been more impressed with Craig.
"Throughout the whole process - which was lengthy and complicated, Craig was on hand immediately every time, going above and beyond to reassure, and guide us, dealing with all parties involved efficiently and effectively every time.
"Even after his part of the deal was completed, he has been available to offer advice and support; we will absolutely be recommending Christie Finance to all friends and family.
"Thanks again for all your assistant during this Craig, we genuinely couldn’t have done it without you!"
Mr Dickson said: "I was delighted to arrange the funding, enabling Fredi and Hazel to purchase their ‘dream’ business - given the current climate this was not the easiest deal to finance and we encountered a few bumps on-road, however, we got there in the end.
"The Coach House Coffee Shop is a thriving business and is recognised locally as a community hub - Fredi and Hazel will very much be hands on and are looking forward to getting to know their loyal and regular customers."