Sisters launch their own Poppies appeal

Sisters Denise Arthur and Yvonne Potter, right,  will be opening their new Poppies Tea Room and Gift Shop in Church Street, Seaham, in the New Year.
Sisters Denise Arthur and Yvonne Potter, right, will be opening their new Poppies Tea Room and Gift Shop in Church Street, Seaham, in the New Year.
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A BUSINESS is set to bloom again as three sisters prepare to relaunch their cafe.

Denise Arthur, Yvonne Potter and Karen Shaw ran their popular, award-winning tea room and gift shop Poppies, in South Crescent, Seaham, for three years, but closed in August after an agreement could not be reached over their lease.

Now the family and their staff are preparing to serve their loyal customers once again after taking on the former Cafe Creme premises in the town’s Church Street.

Work is ongoing in the building to refurbish its toilets, install new doors and also cover the cost of signage as the business takes on the new name.

The improvements are being carried out thanks to a grant from Durham County Council and support of the landlord, with the women hoping to welcome customers again in the first week of the new year.

Denise said: “We can’t wait to get going again.

“People have been so lovely and everybody keeps calling in to see when we’ll be open.”

In addition to serving old favourites, the women will also be trying out new additions to the menu after picking up some recipes from top television chefs.

A gift section will also be added to the new shop in coming months.

In addition to the sisters, with Yvonne dividing her time between the business and her job as an assistant at Westlea Primary School, all but one of the seven workers from the former cafe will take up their posts.

Denise’s son Graham, 26, has taken up a job in pharmacy.

The cafe will be a welcome addition to the high street, filling a unit which had been shut up for several months.

Wetherspoons pub chain has been given planning permission to open in the M&Co store. Other applications seeking approval are plans to turn the former opticians at 31 Church Street in to a veterinary surgery and 43 Church Street, which used to be Dicksons, in to a takeaway.

Calverts electrical store has also asked for backing for new signs to be put on the front of the building.

A proposal to turn the former shop in Lord Street in to a cafe has also been put in to Durham County Council.

Twitter: @EchoEastDurham