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The Danish Kitchen, in High Ousegate, York to close after 36 years
A CAFE which has served York for 36 years is to close to make way for a new burger bar.
The Danish Kitchen, in High Ousegate, is planning to sell its lease in a move that will see the loss of 17 jobs.
Owner Anthony Gibbons, whose parents Colin and Audrey opened the cafe in 1977, says the business in no longer viable due to high street coffee shop chains pushing local businesses out.
Mr Gibbons decided to close the well-established cafe after being approached to sell the lease on the property to Byron Hamburgers Limited.
The chain, which has 34 sites including 29 in London, was dubbed George Osborne’s favourite this summer when the Chancellor tweeted a picture of himself eating a takeaway from the upmarket brand, leading to wide criticism of being “out of touch”.
The closure of Danish Kitchen is subject to City of York Council approving a licensing application submitted by Byron to cover opening hours, sale of alcohol, recorded music and late night refreshments.
Mr Gibbons said: “I’m very sad to be closing after all these years, but with increasing over heads its just not a profitable business any more.
“We have also had to face a lot more competition from national brands which are squeezing out the independents.
“I have had so many loyal customers over the years, some who have continued to come since the day we opened.
“It’s very sad for them, and sad for the staff too who have been fantastic. I owe the customers and the staff a lot and we wouldn’t have lasted this long if it wasn’t for them.”
The Danish Kitchen opened in 1977 in what is now occupied by Nandos. It moved next door to its current site in 1991 to take advantage of larger premises enabling it to extend its seating capacity to 88.
Mr Gibbons says if the licensing application is granted and the lease sale goes through, The Danish Kitchen could be closed by January next year.
Byron was founded six years ago, and until recently was owned by Gondola Group, which also owns PizzaExpress and Zizzi.
However the firm has recently been sold for £100 million to Wagamama’s parent company Hutton Collins Partners.
As well as its sites in London, Byron has restaurants in Liverpool, Manchester, Oxford, Kent and Cambridge.
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