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New coffee and cocktail bar The Old Pharmacy opens in Sandwich thanks to council grant

A council grant has helped transform an empty shop into a European-style coffee and cocktail bar in Sandwich.

David and Andrew Ayers were awarded £10,000 from Dover District Council to help with renovation costs of the King Street building which was most recently clothes shop, Funky Granny, Groovy Grandpa.

Andrew Ayers and business partner David have opened The Old Pharmacy in Sandwich
Andrew Ayers and business partner David have opened The Old Pharmacy in Sandwich

Now named The Old Pharmacy in homage to its earlier life as a chemist, it has been redesigned into a modern drinking spot, to complement the town's more traditional pubs.

They serve coffee by day and cocktails in the evening and also welcome families.

Andrew Ayers said: "Both of us have worked in hospitality for a number of years and wanted to do something fun and different.

"We're focussing on the after work, pre-dinner drinks with a selection of cocktails and local wines on offer.

"We excited to finally open and look forward to being part of the Sandwich hospitality scene.”

The modern bar at the front of the building Picture: AverDesign
The modern bar at the front of the building Picture: AverDesign

The funding came from the Town Centre Business Grant Scheme which is aimed at improving the town centres in Dover, Deal and Sandwich.

It encourages new, small businesses to use empty properties and existing businesses to smarten up their shop fronts.

Another successful applicant in recent months was Harry Richardson of the Elephant and Hind pub in Market Square in Dover.

Mr Ayers continued: "We've had a really great reception from people since we opened. As well as people from Sandwich we've had customers from Deal, Ramsgate and further afield.

"We serve complimentary canapés with our drinks which have gone down really well.

The comfortable lounge at the back of the new coffee spot Picture: AverDesign
The comfortable lounge at the back of the new coffee spot Picture: AverDesign

"People also love what we've done with the interior as it's three separate rooms and courtyard, with the front bar having a very different feel to the lounges at the back.

"We’d like to thank DDC for the grant which helped make this possible."

Roger Walton, DDC strategic director, said: “This is another great example of how Dover District Council’s Town Centre Business Grant Scheme can help to support local business across the district.”

The Old Pharmacy is open from 4pm until 9pm on Thursdays and Fridays, noon until 9pm on Saturdays and noon until 3pm on Sundays.

Read more: All the latest news from Sandwich


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