Sheffield restaurant forced to wait weeks for repairs after vandals smash window
The manager of a Sheffield restaurant said they may be forced to close unless vital repairs are carried out, repairs which they have been waiting for for over a month.
Chris Hanson, manager and head chef of Blend Kitchen, said he had been battling for the repairs since April 13 when vandals smashed the restaurant window.
The restaurant, which is based on the busy Pinstone Street, was again targeted by vandals just a day.
They broke in and stole around £100 in cash, computer equipment and various items such as screwdrivers.
The damage was reported to Sheffield City Council – who lease the property to Blend Kitchen – and the council’s leasing agent.
After receiving no reply, the Blend team instructed their solicitors to contact the council but, Mr Hanson said there was again no response.
Mr Hanson said: “The window was smashed again the other night, one more hit and the window will go through. If we are broken into again we won’t be able to operate.
“We’ve got thousands of pounds worth of equipment. If we get broken into again, as a small social enterprise, we just haven’t got the money in the bank to afford to buy more equipment and won’t be able to continue.
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“If we are forced to close that will result in redundancies. Lots of our staff have learning disabilities, mental health conditions or have experienced homelessness.
“This will mean those vulnerable adults are left without a job, it will be the potential ramifications for them not to mention it would mean one less independent in the city centre.”
Blend Kitchen is a social enterprise restaurant which opened in 2018 and is run by Sheffield based community interest company Blend Cook Eat Share.
The restaurant trains and develops people furthest from the jobs market including ex-offenders and and parents returning to the world of work also help them build their confidence, assist on housing matters, financial management, practical home cookery and other critical life skills.
The team have also written to Sheffield Council leader Julie Dore, who made reference to Blend when highlighting the positive work the council are supporting locally during a recent council meeting, but are yet to receive a response.
Mr Hanson said the lease for Blend was due to finish at the end of this year, and as such they are also asking the council to consider an extension.
He added he received the first email correspondence on May 23, from Julie Dore’s secretary stating the issue had been passed onto Coun Mazher Iqbal.
Sheffield Council did not respond in time for comment before The Star went to print.