Twickenham High Street Update

Sir? Madam? Can we tempt you with a brief High street update? Indeed, we would be sincerely honoured if you were to peruse the following article. Err, like, now dudes.

closing down

closing down

York Street’s in a right old state of flux. Carpet House is closing down and the Rugby Store is moving on. From all the newspaper plastered over the windows recently it looks as if Hair Design (10 York Street) is no more. Work going on inside suggests a new shop will be opening there soon selling phone accessories, gadgets, mobile top-ups, sunglasses and the like [Update: It’s called Khan Communication]. Din’s Grill – the intermittently open takeaway sans pareil – is getting a refurb and a new independently run takeaway will open in its place; something a little bit different we hear. And it does seem that we may finally see some movement in what was the old Shanghai Village restaurant with the long-awaited (by some, perhaps) arrival of the estate agents Foxtons at 20-24 York Street. A few steps along, the short-lived Bathrooms4All (now Bathrooms4None) store could be getting new occupiers soon…

Sticking with bathrooms, in our last update we trailed the arrival of a new bathroom or kitchen store at 33 Heath Road in the unit previously occupied by Chez Chevallier and, before that, the hat shop. Well folks, it’s not a case of kitchens or bathrooms, no siree, it’s a case of kitchens AND bathrooms. Put that in your proverbial pipe and smoke it. It’s called Twickenham Designs and looks like it’ll be ready to open its doors in the not too distant future. Nearby, the place that has probably had more changes of ownership than it’s served hot dinners, is changing yet again. Harsh? Nope. Think Wineland Taverna, Wineland Steakhouse, Kaswani, Nights of Tehran, Pablo’s and da Vinci (complete with ownership dispute so that may well count as two businesses). Well, it’s changing again. The next iteration of 39 Heath Road will be a Turkish Restaurant called Istanbul Ocakbasi. We’re not sure of the who’s, what’s and why’s behind it but it might be worth a visit. Good luck ‘n’ all that.

On the other side of Heath Road, the new mini-café B20 looks to be on the brink of opening. It’s all about coffees, sarnies, smoothies and spicies. Spicies? So what if we had to sacrifice proper words in the interests of rhyme. Deal with it. It’s a just couple of doors up from Rubens Bakehouse.

King Street has a new cafe. The Coffee Lab opened in late April in the little space that used to be Tutto Buono. Interesting shop sign and one that should appeal to coffee loving chemists.

There are signs of work going on in what used to be Angelo’s. Can we expect a new restaurant in there? Things just aren’t the same without a gaggle of lycra clad peddlers from Twickenham Cycling Club clogging up the pavement on Heath Road. Angelo’s, despite some changes of ownership from the days of the original Angelo, does carry some brand value locally so a decent pizzeria could do quite well. Perhaps. We’ve heard that under the new lessee it will re-start life as a cafe but then get a bit more restaurant focused. A rumour that McDonalds could be heading there was rapidly dismissed when we asked about it, but could the golden arches be set to reappear in Twickenham somewhere? There’s certainly space for one. We’ve got KFC, Burger King and Wimpy so another fast-food chain would surely be very welcome indeed. Wouldn’t it?

Now then, when Blockbuster went bust northern supermarket types Morrisons snapped up some of their locations. Is the Twickenham store on Heath Road one of those that will become a Morrisions Local, or “M-Local” as they call them in the chain’s Bradford HQ, and in the shops themselves for that matter? That’s pronounced “mi Local” by the way. Just think Parker from Thunderbirds addressing Lady Penelope and you’ll get it. Well, if Mozzer’s website is anything to go by we’re in for a treat… because they’re recruiting staff for their new Twickenham M-Local store. Do you need “more reasons to shop at Morrisons”. Be honest, the poor quality of that strapline ought to be a good reason not to visit but as they’ve finally dumped that in favour of a new one you’ll have to make your own decision. So, what could be good news for Morrisons’ shareholders could be bad news for the few independents nearby as well as providing some stiff competition for M&S, Iceland and Tesco Express.

We’re still waiting on progress in what was Dapper at 16 Church Street and the efforts to turn it into coffee shop, Wild About Coffee. It would certainly fill a gap in the market that coffee drinkers and cake eaters have been crying out for for so long.

It looks as if someone’s having yet another go at improving the never-opened Rugby Inn on London Road. It’s been repainted again, moving away from the colour that could best be described as “wet weekend in Croydon” towards a two-tone affair.

And bookending the town, and indeed bookending this item, a new estate agent McGeachie Medd is opening at 193 Richmond Road near The Crown – the refurbishment of which is now proceeding apace – and it won’t be too long before Sainsburys Local is up and running on The Green. Interestingly the plans for a Sainsburys in Teddington have run into quite a lot of opposition from the locals there so lordy knows what would happen if Morrisons tried to muscle in. Tedders types would probably politely tell them to go and focaccia.

That’s all for the moment.

To let... to Foxtons

To let… to Foxtons

The Coffee Lab

The Coffee Lab

Istanbul Ocakbasi, Turkish Restaurant

Istanbul Ocakbasi, Turkish Restaurant

29 Comments

Filed under Food & Drink, High Street Updates, Local Issues & News

29 responses to “Twickenham High Street Update

  1. Anonymous

    The Three Kings is now re-openend, under new management.Great couple, new decor, great food, well worth a look.

  2. carm

    does anyone know the address or contact tel for the twickenham premier inn by the station? cannot find it?

  3. Anonymous

    Heaths sandwich bar may soon be going,the landlord is impossible & forcing poor man out.

  4. Bert

    Don’t forget Cousins, the greengrocers, I have a good chat whenever I go in there. Great apples too

  5. Anonymous

    Angelos homeless Polish people are you serious

  6. Steve P

    The owner of the Three Kings has taken on the Rugby Inn and aims to reopen there in late June. Nice guy so good luck to him. This is a move so the Kings will be back on the market.

  7. Gerry

    Credit where credit is due – two of Twickenham’s latest foodie additions are really quite superb. I am now unable to buy coffee from anywhere except Harris + Hoole and bread must now come from Rubens Bakery. Unfortunately, Harris + Hoole also sell excellent sandwiches. If you haven’t tried them, treat yourself.

  8. TwickersFlickers

    Many more estate and letting agents open up the only thing that’ll be left for them to sell and rent is office space formerly belonging to estate and letting agents.

    Morrisons is almost pleasant variety next to the string of letting and estate agents in Twickenham.

    • Steve P

      They’re wheeling overhead waiting for the feeding frenzy of the station/PO developments I expect.

  9. Purple Haze

    It’s all a big ruse…
    Solum are building a tower block at the station that will double up as a control tower and departure and arrivals lounge for the new ‘Third Runway’ which will run down King St and Heath Rd once it’s been demolished. The station will be renamed The Blue Baron Aerodrome.

  10. David

    So within a few hundred yards we’ll have a Waitrose, an Iceland, an M&S Food, a Morrisons, a Tesco and a Sainsburys. With an Asda just over the A316. It’s like supermarket bingo.

  11. Pot Noodle

    Angelo’s is going to be divided up and the Polish cafe will take over part of the ground floor. The rear of the premises will be turned into residential accommodation for homeless Polish people.

  12. Walkinthepark

    Well actually, whatever brand perceptions the Twickerati might have, oop north Morrisons are seen as differentiating themselves on service and the freshness and value of their food, so having one situated in the golden triangle of Sandy’s, Laverstoke Park and Reuben’s might be beneficial for all. Let’s see.

    Founder Ken, who still does the rounds of the stores to make sure they keep to the founding values, started with a cheese stall…….. perhaps someone should write to him and tell him what we really want!!

  13. The Crown says it will reopen ‘in early May’. It is looking for a full team of bar and kitchen staff: richard.brown@messagecentral.co.uk

  14. Do we really need another supermarket? Another estate agent? These kind of shops are just taking people away from Twickenham High Street and sending them directly to Richmond. Teddington and Kingston…

    • Pot Noodle

      I don’t think a supermarket or estate agents drives someone to other areas.

    • Adam

      I think the point is a lack of variety drives people to other areas (but I may be wrong). Sadly, I can’t see Twickenham getting a new department store or a selection of up-market boutiques, so Richmond and Kingston will always offer more than here (although I’m not sure Teddington has that we don’t have).

    • Pot Noodle

      Lack of variety? I don’t understand this point. Twickenham is not the sort of town for up market boutiques. Have you seen how many so called snobby boutiques open and close in a matter of months on that parade next to the Odeon cinema in Richmond?

    • anonanon

      Larger bank balances perhaps? Now I know it is very unwise to trust any government statistics but…
      http://www.neighbourhood.statistics.gov.uk/HTMLDocs/incomeestimates.html. This is a bit hit and miss – but it looks to me like the average household income for Teddington Is £1300 pw vs £1020 pw for Twickenham.

    • Rufus McDufus

      Ah – that must explain the extreme poverty I see on a daily basis in Twickenham!
      I agree about the lack of variety. The likes of Reubens, Sandy’s, Laverstocke are showing that there is a need for genuine independent quality stores. That is the future of any high street in my opinion, what with cheap shopping on the interweb an ‘all.
      Maybe I’m unusual but I just don’t feel the need to go on a coffee, estate agent & small supermarket binge each time I go down to Twickenham centre.

    • Simon H

      Those figures probably include Whitton in Twickenham, lowering the average (sorry Whitton)

    • TwickersFlickers

      Thanks for those numbers anonanon.

      If those are anything like accurate shows how fruit loop LBRuT’s house prices have gotten and reflects LBRuT’s figures of over 10 times average income pretty much borough wide and worse in Richmond Park / Kew.

      I would love to see an income distribution and a median household income. You’ve given me some homework, thanks!