Sadness as Rye bakery and coffee shop closes

The Rye Bakery in the High Street
The Rye Bakery in the High Street

A popular coffee shop and bakery in Rye has closed down after more than 20 years of trading.

The Rye Bakery in the High Street shut its doors on Saturday (October 29).

One upset resident said: “I was rather dismayed and upset to see that after 20 years this regular coffee shop, which sells bread and many other things, and of which had many regular customers, closed on Saturday.

“The coffee shop brought many customers in just to come and chat about their day and had regular custom from Rye people, some of whom went in for coffee Monday to Saturday for many years.

“Many businesses will be affected by this in the High Street as they went in for locally sourced bread for some of their coffee shops, restaurants, pubs even their homes.

“This shop will well and truly be missed by all. It’s sad and ever so disappointing.”

The Rye Bakery has several branches, one in Battle Road, St Leonards, one in Mount Road, Ore and another shop in Hawkhurst in Kent.

The business is owner by Donna and Glenn Croucher.

Mr Croucher said he had to close the Rye branch because his lease on the premises came to an end on Sunday (October 30).

He said: “The new rent being offered was £25,000 a year plus VAT, which is enormous.

“Business rates would have also been close to £7,000 a year.

“We are disappointed and sad we have had to close but from a business point of view we would not have made any money at all.”

Mr Croucher said he has operated a bakery in Rye since 1989.

He said: “We offered one person a job in our office but had to make the other staff redundant.

“They will be first on our list to employ when we move back into another premises elsewhere in the High Street by next Easter.

“This branch will be a lot smaller and not be a coffee shop.”

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