See inside Sunderland's newest coffee shop Smugglers Coffee Co in Pallion

Sunderland’s newest coffee shop is brewing up a new chapter for a transformed unit on one of the city’s busiest local high streets.
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Smugglers Coffee Co has opened in St Luke’s Terrace, Pallion, after a six-month refit of the former Pallion Fruiterers unit.

Two weeks after opening, it’s already proving a hot spot with a wave of new customers who’ve said it’s “just what the street needed.”

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The only sit-in independent coffee shop in the street, it’s been brought to the area by business partners Greg Butler and Paul Jenner after they noticed a gap in the market.

Smugglers Coffee Co, PallionSmugglers Coffee Co, Pallion
Smugglers Coffee Co, Pallion

Greg has worked in hospitality for a number of years, most recently at the popular Saltgrass pub in Deptford, and he says it’s great for the new venture to be so warmly received by the community.

"We have had such a great response,” he said. “The local community has been fantastic, we’ve had Good Luck cards from customers and the other businesses such as The Urban Terrace Kitchen have been really welcoming. I think everyone is glad to see another independent on the street.

"We’ve already got some customers who come in two to three times a day, they say it’s just what the street needed.”

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Coffee is made using Cracked Bean, a social enterprise roastery based in Washington.

The new Smugglers coffee shop on St Luke's Terrace, Pallion.The new Smugglers coffee shop on St Luke's Terrace, Pallion.
The new Smugglers coffee shop on St Luke's Terrace, Pallion.

As well as a wide range of coffees, Smugglers also sells smoothies, waffles, bagels, toasted sandwiches and more for sit in or takeaway.

There’s 16 covers inside, with further seating at the front of the coffee shop and plans are in place to transform outdoor space at the rear of the site into a terrace in time for the summer.

The new business has so far created six new jobs, but more are set to become available in the future.

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Greg and Paul already have plans to open a Smugglers Coffee Co – named after the early days of smuggling coffee out of countries – in Durham as part of a potential chain of coffee shops.

:: Smugglers Coffee Co is open Monday to Friday from 7am to 5pm, Saturday from 7am to 4pm and Sunday from 9am to 3pm.

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