York cookshop owner to sell off hardware business

The owners of the fledgling Frankie & Johnny’s Cookshop in York are selling their nearby Pextons Hardware business.

York cookshop owner to sell off hardware business

Husband and wife team Frankie and Johnny Hayes have run Pextons, in Bishopthorpe Road, for 13 years, and last November opened a new 450sq ft cookshop five doors down. Johnny Hayes continued to run the hardware shop while Frankie moved over to look after the cookshop. But now, Johnny is retiring.

“It’s just been very hard work and Johnny hasn’t had much time off,” Frankie told HousewaresLive.net. “He’s going to be 60 next year. We want a quieter pace of life, shorter hours, more holidays, and we decided we could downsize and live off the little cookshop.”

The Hayes will be selling the Pextons business and renting out the property, of which they own the freehold, and had shaken hands on a deal within 12 hours of it going on the market. Subject to contract, the new owners will be a couple in their 20s, new to hardware retail.

Meanwhile, Frankie will continue to run Frankie & Johnny’s Cookshop, with Johnny helping out on occasion. And as chairman of Bishopthorpe Road Traders Association, he is also currently busy organising an event on July 4 to tie in with Independent Retailer Month.

Frankie said business at the cookshop had see-sawed but run on target overall since its mid-November launch. “Christmas was really, really good, we were constantly ordering, but January and February were quiet,” she explained. “When I’ve averaged it out it’s fine but you couldn’t get a bigger contrast.”

The best sellers have proved to be “anything to do with baking, and teapots – we have a teapot shelf going right round the top of the ceiling. It’s decorative but also good for storage”.

She went on: “I know a lot of people thought we were mad opening a luxury shop in a double-dip recession but the street is quite exceptional – there are no boarded-up shops round here. And it’s not about making a fortune out of it. I wanted a shop I could enjoy. It’s been a dream of mine for quite a few years.”

And she added her thanks to Mel Done of King’s Lynn’s Cook To Perfection cookshop for all her help and advice while setting up the business.

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