Two businesses in the centre of Alnwick have been forced to close temporarily – apparently a knock-on effect of structural damage at a neighbouring premises.
Earlier this month, we reported that The Lunch Box, in Alnwick Market Place, unexpectedly shut after concerns about structural damage to the building. Twelve part-time staff have lost their jobs.
The café had been fenced off since then, but as of today, the neighbouring premises – Clippers barbers and The Powder Room beauty salon – are also closed off, preventing any access.
Signs on the fencing explain that both businesses are closed today and Monday, but hope to be open again on Tuesday. It adds: ‘This is beyond our control, and sorry for the inconvenience’.
Tom McKie, who runs The Lunch Box, has said he doesn’t know how long it will be shut for, but feared ‘it could be months rather than weeks’. He said: “It is a shock and it will have an impact, having come at the start of summer. It couldn’t have come at a worse time. I don’t know what is happening; that is down to Northumberland County Council and my landlord.
“Twelve part-time staff have lost their jobs because of this, but I hope to reopen and take them back on because they are very loyal.”
At that time, a county-council spokesman said: “We regret any impact on The Lunch Box and Market Place, but this action is in the interests of public safety and we will monitor the situation.”