Award-winning retail and restaurant business Eat 17, which is part-owned by wholesaler AF Blakemore & Son, has opened a brand new Spar store in the Kent seaside town of Whitstable.
The new store represents the latest chapter in the highly successful partnership between Blakemore and entrepreneurs James Brundle and Chris O’Connor (pictured above), who have been behind the award-winning Walthamstow and Hackney SPAR and Eat 17 restaurant sites.
The Whitstable Spar, which is a former My Local store, stocks an extensive range of everyday essentials, including Spar brand products, as well as 1,800 local and regional lines.
Eat 17 co-owner James Brundle said: “We are really excited to have acquired this site. Whitstable is a great fit for our brand – the perfect mix of tradition and trendiness.
“Working in partnership with Blakemore Trade Partners has been hugely beneficial in getting us across the line with the development of this site. We are also delighted to be able to keep all eleven staff and will be looking to recruit more.”
In addition to hundreds of locally sourced lines and handpicked products from around the world, the store’s offering includes Eat 17’s renowned homemade ready meals and Bacon Jam, fresh sandwiches made in-store, artisan bread from a local bakery and wine and prosecco taps from which customers can fill empty wine bottles.
There is also a charity pot coffee machine, where customers can make a voluntary donation to a good cause chosen by the store.
Eat 17 will continue to invest in developing the site over the coming weeks. Later this month the company aims to launch a brand new ice cream parlour serving unique flavours of ice cream, all made onsite using locally sourced ingredients.
A.F. Blakemore commercial director Caoire Blakemore said: “We are delighted to open this new store in Whitstable. The SPAR and Eat 17 brands have proven to work successfully and flawlessly alongside each other since the concept first launched in 2010. The business has moved onto the next stage and we are very excited about the future.”
Chris O’Connor (left) and James Brundle (right) are pictured above.