News 2019

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Deal Pier Kitchen

Deal Pier Kitchen, 2nd January 2019

… will open its doors every day from 9am until 5pm as of Friday 4th January.

Deal: Popular pier café reopens with new look and managers as part of £500,000 refurbishment scheme.

Kent Online, Friday 4th January 2019

A popular café at the end of Deal Pier was re-opened today with a new look and management team. The Deal Pier Kitchen has been completely overhauled as part of the council's £500,000 refurbishment of the Pier on which it sits. The unit closed on 31st December 2017 after former occupant Jasin Kaplan's lease was terminated by mutual agreement with Dover District Council.

Council chairman Cllr Sue Chandler cutting the ribbon alongside Cllr Trevor Bartlet (right), Tim Biggs (centre left) and Rebecca Hodson (left)

Not only has the interior been modernised, but the previous leaseholders have been replaced with two new managers, Tim Biggs and Rebecca Hodson. Speaking at the opening, 27-year-old Ms Hodson said:

"We're absolutely ecstatic to finally be open and operational. It's a beautiful town and I've got to spend a huge amount of time here while improvement work was underway. We feel so lucky and immensely grateful to have won the lease and we're excited to see how it goes. The people in the town are great and it's lovely welcoming them through our doors."

Chairman of Dover District Council Cllr Sue Chandler cut the ribbon on the new eatery, which features in the Deal-based ITV drama series Liar. The councillor said:

"This is a special opening for us as the council owns the Pier and it's a key part of our refurbishment plan. It's also great to see two younger people decide to take on this exciting venture."

Having first pitched for the lease in May, the new managers will be working closely with the council over the course of their 20-year lease. Cllr Trevor Bartlett, portfolio holder for property management and environmental health, has played an integral role in the renovations and attended the opening. Speaking about the café, he said:"

"It's absolutely lovely. It's an iconic building and we felt that we wanted it to lend an essence to that and capture the lovely Pier itself. We interviewed Tim and Rebecca and we were so impressed with their enthusiasm. They came along for the interview and brought along some wonderful samples of their food. That didn't sway us but it was lovely having to try all the food. Other people did that as well but there was something about Tim and Rebecca. It was their enthusiasm and you could just sense that from them, that they were really keen and wanted to run this Pier. It's taken maybe a little while longer than we wanted. We had issues with the previous owners and it wasn't just a straight forward process of them just leaving and Tim and Rebecca coming in, but we are where we are and today is the official opening so we're now just looking forward."

Owners, Rebecca Hodson and Tim Biggs with their team at the opening of their new business - Deal Pier Kitchen café - at the end of Deal Pier

The venue - which will be open daily from 9am to 5pm - is dog-friendly and offers a wide range of drinks and brunch options. All of the 300m Pier's seating was replaced ahead of Christmas as part of the council's £500,000 renovation scheme, which was announced on the structure's Diamond Anniversary in 2017. The project was completed ahead of schedule by Walmer-based contractors, Hipperson.