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The Allotment Kitchen & Deli at Gusto House in Collingham is set to close

A venue specialising in plant-based cuisine, which opened a year ago, is set to close doors at the end of the month — with owners lamenting that it was ‘ahead of our time’.

Gemma Whitelock, who runs The Allotment Kitchen and Deli at the Gusto House, Collingham, announced yesterday (July 9) that the business will cease trade at the end of this month.

The premises which opened last July, focuses on sustainability — with a vegan and vegetarian menu and space decor.

The Allotment Kitchen & Deli, Collingham
The Allotment Kitchen & Deli, Collingham

However, the location of the space and the type of offer provided have made it difficult for the hospitality business, forcing management to make the decision to close doors.

On the business Facebook page, Gemma wrote: “We have achieved so much in our short trading period, including our support of the local food pantry, providing local football and sporting groups with nutritionally balanced meals to support performance, special event nights and supper clubs to showcase plant-based food at its best as well as achieving our BCorp pending accreditation to demonstrate our clear focus on sustainability and supporting local.

“We know that plant-based food is a growing area and the need for more sustainable ‘plant focussed’ options will be something that we will see more of. We were just a little too ahead of our time for the current market.

“I’d like to thank Gusto for their support with this project and for taking the risk for such a forward-thinking idea. We know that the needs of the village will be at the heart of any decision for the space moving forward.

“We have met some truly lovely people through this venture, and we know that we have helped lots of people to see how tasty plant-based food can be if it is done well.

“Thank you to everyone who has visited us over the last year. We truly appreciate your support.”

In January this year, the Collingham Food Pantry moved from its premises in the old Lincolnshire Co-op building in Collingham to The Allotment Kitchen and Deli.

As the hospitality business closed on Mondays, they provided the space for the pantry to operate on Mondays from 8am until 10am.

The director of Gusto House, Steff Wright said: “I am sad to see the business go but simply wasn’t viable to keep it going, it didn’t have enough customers.

“The space is fitted beautifully as a restaurant and cafe and we would like a business that aligns with the gusto house sustainability but maybe more mainstream, it doesn’t have to be plant-based to be sustainable.”

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