A Broomhill café which closed its doors after 30 years has made a swift return.
Vittles, on Glossop Road, shut three months ago to the dismay of regular customers who had called in for breakfasts, drinks, cakes and snacks made with locally-sourced ingredients since 1986.
At the time, boss Mick Caswell, who owns the business with his wife Paula, blamed increasing competition in the suburb, saying Broomhill was reaching ‘saturation point’ for new openings.
However, a deal with another owner to turn the café into a sushi bar fell through, and Vittles is back again in its familiar form indefinitely.
Mick said: “We had the sale agreed and were supposed to sign the contract. It got my goat a bit because we had 14 enquiries while they were going through the process.”
Opening hours have been restricted to 9.30am-2pm, Wednesday to Sunday, and the food menu is smaller, with breakfasts, bagels and eggs Benedict among the limited offering.
Mick and Paula are the only staff, with ‘one or two extra members on Saturday and Sunday’, he said.
“The students are coming back next month so we’ll probably open five or six days then.”
Mick said he thought a sushi bar ‘would have gone down really well’.
“It’s something different. It was going to serve alcohol and open at night as well. It wasn’t to be, unfortunately. I think they really missed out on an opportunity.”
He added: “The café is a saleable commodity, and a decent size, so we would like someone to come along and take it over as Vittles, but we don’t see anyone who is going to do that.”
No time limit has been put on the reopening.
“Probably someone will redevelop it as something else. If there’s no sale we’ll just keep it on and see where we go from there.”
Vittles’ comeback has coincided with the closure of nearby Rod’s Dogs, the American-themed diner on Fulwood Road.
“This is the effect of having too many cafés in a certain area,” Mick said.
“If you’ve got something to bring people in, like a big park – which we haven’t – then there would be enough customers.”
The Caswells took over from Vittles’ original owners in 2012.