Secret's out about shop's hidden garden
A SECLUDED garden behind a town centre shop will be one of the worst kept secrets before long following the relaxation of lockdown restrictions which allow customers to once again enjoy a break and a beverage in the refurbished retreat.
In 2018 Chocolate Fayre owners Kenny and Sarah Walker purchased new premises on the opposite side of Horsemarket, Barnard Castle, to their original base.
Renovation work took a lot of blood, sweat and tears, but by the autumn of 2019 they were able to welcome customers to their new larger premises, which also boasts a garden area to the rear.
Mr Walker said: “The new building gave us scope to not only carry on providing all of the products and services for which we are already known, but also add a range of hot drinks including coffees, loose-leaf tea and our now sought-after signature hot chocolate.
“The garden comes into its own on those warmer days. It’s a sun trap nestled behind the shop.”
Alongside a continental-style courtyard with tables, chairs with umbrellas there is an enclosed play area for little ones.
Mr Walker added: “I worked out in the 20 months since we have been operating the shop from the new premises, we have only been able to use the garden for less than nine weeks, so it’s still a bit of a secret. We normally have toys out in the play area, but with Covid restrictions we still have those locked away but it is still a nice place to sit and relax.”
Sue Jackson, daughter Ginny Teward and four-month-old grandson Harry were in agreement.
They were delighted to be able to get back to their favourite spot last week, soaking up a few rays of sun and of course a well-earned hot chocolate.
Mrs Jackson said: “It’s just so peaceful here. You wouldn’t think you were in the middle of town.
“We were in a few times between lockdowns last year and it’s nice to be able to get back out again. I don’t drink tea or coffee so it’s always hot chocolate for me and it is so good here.”