Herts hardware store opens standalone cookshop

A new cookshop has opened in Tring, Hertfordshire – a spin-off from an established hardware store in the town.
Metcalfe’s Cookshop sits next door to FW Metcalfe & Sons in Tring High Street and used to house The Green House vegetarian restaurant, which was set up by the hardware shop’s owner David Metcalfe.

However, the restaurant closed around a year ago and the outlet remained empty until the middle of June, when it reopened as the cookshop along with a vegetarian cafe.

David Metcalfe’s step-sister, Joanna Lace, who, along with Ruth Trimmer, is running the cookshop, told HousewaresLive.net that the premises are over three floors.

“The cookshop has a third of the ground floor and the cellar,” she said. “The back two-thirds of the ground floor is where the cafe is, and in the upstairs room there’s a children’s play area.”

The basis of the new cookshop is all the cookware and kitchenware that used to be in the hardware shop.

“We’ve moved everything over, and we’ve added in a cake decorating area and are doing cake tin hire,” Lace went on. “That’s very new to us so we’re being customer led. And we’re going to tweak and expand things as we go.”

The move has not only created more room in the original shop for the expansion of the hardware, DIY and gardening lines, but has also given the kitchenware and cookware a new lease of life.

“We were bursting at the seams and something had to give,” Lace explained, “and the building we’ve moved into has a lot of character – old brickwork and open fireplaces – that lends itself nicely to nice displays. The shop never quite did the kitchenware justice.”

She added that, so far: “The response has been very positive, particularly to the cake decorating side. We’re fortunate that it’s 10 miles either way to get to a big town with any chain or department stores so the High Street does draw people in. And having been established next door for so long we had a very good client base.”

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