Young business owner begins new venture just 14 weeks after his Blackhall diner was targeted by arsonists

Corey Longstaff was left devastated in July when his diner was seriously damaged in an arson attack but he is now back up and running.

Wednesday, 4th November 2020, 4:30 pm

The 23-year-old has joined forces with a new business partner, Vicki Hutchinson, and together they have opened a brand new diner in Horden just 14 weeks after CL’s Diner was hit by an arson attack.

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Vicki Hutchinson and Corey Longstaff, the owners of C&V's diner in Horden.

It was believed that a suspect had gained entry to the rear of the café before setting a fire and running off – leaving Corey’s business in ruin.

However on Monday, October 19, C & V’s Diner on Eden Street in Horden opened to the public and it has been confirmed that it will remain open throughout lockdown for takeaway and delivery.

Corey has explained how hard the last few months have been for him following the blaze and has praised Vicki for her support.

He said: “It’s been very difficult, I’ve literally had no income since the fire in July so it has been hard to live on nothing.

Corey Longstaff and Vicki Hutchinson (front) with staff Rebecca Martin (left) and Tracey Turnbull.

"The insurance company are yet to pay out so if it wasn’t for Vicki’s offer to go into partnership with me, I wouldn’t be open today.

Following the incident in July, the local community set up an online fundraiser to help out Corey and his staff while they attempted to rebuild.

Now it is Corey’s turn to give back, as he plans to help those who need it most doing the second Covid-19 lockdown.

He added: “We’re setting up to be able to offer free meals for elderly people in the community who need them most throughout lockdown.

"We have worked out that we can provide around £500 worth of meals, all people have to do is contact us.

"If people are nervous to come out and collect them, then we are more than happily to deliver them to their door, contact free.”

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