'Didn't realise how busy it would be' - Fakenham indoor hospitality reopens

The owner of Taylor tea room, Taylor James.

The owner of Taylor tea room, Taylor James. - Credit: Aaron McMillan

Hospitality in Fakenham welcomed back people indoors as more restrictions eased across the county.

May 17 brought about more easing of coronavirus restrictions, as hospitality venues such as pubs and cafes welcomed back their visitors inside for the first time since Christmas.

Tudor Tea Rooms on Norwich Street had been operating with a small outdoor space, but finally opened their cafe doors.

Customers back at Tudor Tea Rooms in Fakenham.

Customers back at Tudor Tea Rooms in Fakenham. - Credit: Aaron McMillan

Colin Johnson, owner of the tea room said business was better than after the first lockdown lifted.

“We're a little bit surprised that people are beginning to come back already, it's more than we thought, this morning I did not expect to see anyone,” he said.

“We have seen more people today than we did last year when the first lockdown lifted.

Colin Johnson, owner of the Tudor Tea Room.

Colin Johnson, owner of the Tudor Tea Room. - Credit: Aaron McMillan

“Now it’s about trying to slowly build up the business again."

Along on Oak Street, Taylors reopened for the first time this year, having decided to stay closed and not to offer takeaway.

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The owner of the tea room, Taylor James, said it had been a busy day.

Taylors tea room on Oak Street in Fakenham.

Taylors tea room on Oak Street in Fakenham. - Credit: Aaron McMillan

“We didn't realise how busy it was going to be,” he said.

“Since we hit 11 o’clock we've gone a bit crazy, I think it’s because we're not used to it, we haven't done it for so long, trying to start again and remember everything has been quite difficult.

“It has been absolutely great to see everyone, to see all your regulars again because I have not seen them for so long.

“We have the same people come in every single day. It's just nice to see them again and see they are still healthy.”

At The Running Horse pub on Hawthorn Way, assistant manager, Harley Dawson said that they were expecting their busiest Monday night in some time, with 80 meals booked in between four and seven.

The 24-year-old was looking forward to things getting back to normal.

Assistant Manager at The Running Horse pub, Harley Dawson.

Assistant Manager at The Running Horse pub, Harley Dawson. - Credit: Aaron McMillan

“It's just nice to see that people are still willing to come out and support the business,” he said.

“Plus, being able to see some of my old regulars and have the banter that we have with them will be great.

“It's good to see a lot of old friendly faces that used to come in before all of this kicked off.”

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