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Café plans to un-Locke potential of former art store next door

Café plans to un-Locke potential of former art store next door

Saturday 13 April 2024

Café plans to un-Locke potential of former art store next door

Saturday 13 April 2024


The husband and wife duo behind a café in an iconic historic building in the heart of town want to expand into a former art gallery next door.

The owners of Locke's café have submitted a planning application to integrate the adjacent building on Pitt Street into their business.

Both buildings are 19th-century townhouses with shopfronts, and the application follows successful restoration efforts of the buildings.

Drew and Ella Locke opened up the café over five years ago with a focused on locally sourced ingredients and ethically sourced coffee, drawing inspiration from their travels to Australia, Bali, and London.

The pair now want to expand into the neighbouring space – which was formerly the Pitt Stream Gallery owned by artist Ian Rolls and wife Ruth Baier-Rolls, and then became The Space – while preserving the historical character of both.

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Pictured: The Lockes want to expand into the gallery formerly owned by Ian Rolls who is pictured here outside the building with his wife and son. (Rob Currie)

The planning application says that the proposed changes offer a "pragmatic approach for providing a sustainable use" to the former gallery, which has a limited practical use as "an independent unit due to its size".

Both buildings are part of a group of historic buildings known as the 'Foot buildings', previously derelict and under threat of demolition for many decades.

Originally owned by the Channel Island Co-operative, plans to demolish the Foot buildings for a large-scale development were halted when the National Trust acquired the buildings for £1 and completed a million-pound refurbishment in 2018.

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Pictured: The iconic HMV logo on one side of the current café building features a dog peering into a gramophone horn with 'F. Foot Authorised HMV dealer'. 

In the early 1900s, the former music store was run by Francis Foot, a gramophone dealer and keen photographer who also sold fishing tackle.

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Pictured top: Ella and Drew Locke at work. (Holly Smith)

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