A well-known Chesterfield cafe is to shut in a fortnight after a controversial decision by council chiefs.
Market Place Cafe, which opened in the Market Hall in 2013, will close on Friday, February 17.
The move comes after Chesterfield Borough Council – which has a ‘venture’ planned for the cafe building – decided to end the tenancy .
Young entrepreneur Shannon Benison, who owns the cafe, said: “They’re basically chucking us out.
“Over the last three years we’ve invested up to £40,000 into the cafe and now this is happening.
“What sort of message does that send to people wanting to set up their own business?”
Shannon, 21, added: “Our customers are devastated at the news – it’s been a massive shock to a lot of people.
“They say they won’t support whatever the council puts in our place.”
Six people will be affected by the cafe’s closure.
Thankfully, they all have alternative employment lined up or college to fall back on.
Councillor Amanda Serjeant, cabinet member for town centres and visitor economy, said: “The council has decided to end the tenancy with the existing café operator at the point when their existing lease with the council runs out.
“We are developing plans to operate commercially on the site with a target to open in July. We are currently working on developing our venture but final decisions have not been made.
“This is part of the council’s strategy to be more commercial in our approach as we look to generate more income to protect core council services as we respond to significant Government cuts to our funding.”
Chesterfield Market Hall reopened in October 2013 following a major £4million pound refurbishment.