The Summer 2017 High Street Update Spectacular

Can it really be five months since our last Twickenham High Street Update? Yep, seems to be the case.  And what a lot has happened! Talk about churn! We’ve got more churn going on than Farmer Ernie “Churny” McChurnford, the winner of the Devon Dairy Farmer of the Year Competition (Churning Division).  Here are some of the highlights and lowlights of the last few months to butter your parsnips. Endure!

 

The former Langton’s bookstore turned shortlived Food Hall on Church Street has now gone for a triple-play option featuring Ricardo’s Cellar, Eel Pie Records and Limpopo Biltong. One corner selling a range of wines, beers and cigars from Ricardo Garcia the man behind Last Try Wines on Whitton Road, one corner selling South African biltong and other dried meats, and one section where you can buy new and used vinyl and CDs or just browse some great music while you drink a coffee. Sounds alright, eh?

 

Ricardo’s Cellar, Eel Pie Records & Limpopo Biltong

It’s an unusual combination put together by a good bunch of people. The record shop guys have even been putting on the occasional in-store – and even outside store – performances by artists booked for TwickFolk on Sundays. Quirky.

 

Limpopo Biltong

Church Street’s popular Italian restaurants, Masaniello and Osteria Pulcinella have been joined by a new arrival called  Al Solito Posto. Its website says it provides “modern-creative and traditional southern styles of cooking”.  Interesting.  Reviews on TripAdvisor are pretty good although woe betide anyone posting a less than good review… you’ll get a right royal telling off from the owner Vincenzo.

Al Solito Posto

Also in Church Street the shop most recently used as the pop-up for El Brute’s riverside consultations and, prior to that Mercado, is now the Evantii boutique selling women’s clothes. As with all things in the balance of the Great Twickenham Universe, something must close to allow something new to open, and in this case it was Plum. That particular Church Street shop is now firmly shut although Plum does still have an online presence and a store in Cornwall.

 

Evantii Church Street

On King Street, the former M&Co is now The Works selling arts, craft and gift materials.  Seasons Cookshop has closed its Twickenham branch. We were sorry to see it go. The shop sold a range of cookware but pressure from high overheads and the challenge of the internet means that Seasons will now be focusing on its other stores in Balham, Crouch End and West Hampstead. Is this just a Twickenham thing? We hear that Iceland will be expanding into the newly vacated space. similarly Decoration, the paint and wallpaper shop from the owners of Callaghan Interiors has shut its doors. It had moved from Richmond Road to Heath Road in 2014 and its closure come after 18 years of trading.

On London Road, what used to be Happicraft (closed as a result of t’internet)  is now 50cycles.com selling electric bikes. Too posh to push? Dodgy knees? Not as fit as you used to be? This could be the thing for you.  For the rest of us there’s nothing quite like the experience of cycling along at quite a clip and being overtaken by some very relaxed looking character on an electric bike who hasn’t even broken sweat. You too can now join the e-bike e-smug brigade.

 

50cycles.com Twickenham

Meanwhile things are happening on Richmond Road. The former pine shop is now Bella Baby selling prams, buggies and baby-related bits and pieces. It’s part of a small Irish chain. With Happicraft having closed thanks to online competition it might be a challenge for Bella Baby to carve out a decent local market but if there’s one thing we can be sure of it’s that there are plenty of young families around the area and buggies don’t push themselves you know… unless they’re golf buggies in which case they do.

 

Bella Baby

Opposite Bella Baby in the place that was most recently The Mulberry Tree is Le Baron, a bar, brasserie and restaurant with a French theme to its menu. The clue’s in the name. It’s a big place (Mr Shadrack) and has a garden too. The former newsagent opposite Le Baron which had the old Picture Post sign exposed for a while is to become a kitchen showroom, Qube West.

 

Le Baron

On the same stretch of road, Indian restaurant Noush Richmond (even though it was in Twickenham) looks to have closed not long after opening. Did it last longer than its predecessor Chung’s Chinese? We’re not sure but, harsh as it may seem, we don’t really need more Indian restaurants in Twickenham unless they’re doing something very different from the many others and even if they are it’s a very hard market to break into. Which is why we’re not feeling massively optimistic about the fate of the former Taste of Moghul which has been almost opening as Aangan for quite some time. It’s going to be ‘Bliss Fully Indian’, whatever that is. Good luck to ya and all that.

 

Aangan: Bliss Fully Indian

One new opening that might work well is a re-invigorated Royal Oak on Richmond Road.  Formerly The Hedgehog and Stump, Twickenham Tup and, most recently, Stokes & Moncreiff. It’s reverted to a previous name, is under new ownership, has been refurbished and has been making a big noise on social media. Initial reports have been positive.

 

The Royal Oak, Richmond Road

It was various things including the Hook, Line and Sinker. Then it became Ales and Tails. That closed in 2014 and it became a Chicago Ribshack. And now it’s become Chicago RibShut. Did you see what we did there? Perhaps it just served its time for the 2015 rugby world cup but its days in Twickenham are now over. The notice says it’s closed for a refurb but as the lease is up for sale it sounds like it’s going to be one of those special Twickenham refurbs.  One of those “We’re not closing for good. Honest! Oh, we just closed for good” kind of things. So sad.

 

Chicago Rib-Shut

Also in York Street, Miss Siam has cooked her last pad thai, but has been replaced by Sawasdee Klub.  It’s also Thai but has more of a cafe feel to it. It has a special lunch menu and also operates as a takeaway, with delivery service. One to try?

Sawasdee Klub

 

More food? Yep. The former Kamares restaurant on Heath Road is now Salt Flakes. The menu has a lot of fish on it but it also serves a range of other dishes including steaks. Price wise main courses generally cost in the mid-teens (more for steaks) and there’s a fixed price lunch menu.

 

Salt Flakes, Heath Road

By Twickenham station the Brewery Wharf site opposite is to get an M Bar and Grill. Never heard of it? It’s part of a small chain of M restaurants founded by Martin Williams. With a couple of other locations in the City and Victoria it sounds like quite an upmarket kind of place. Sounds good (yep, we’re a right posh lot at twickerati HQ). We hope it manages to draw in a local crowd as well as catering for corporate types on rugby days. It’s due to open in September.

Nearby at 2 Whitton Road, Brewery Market will also open soon selling a range of craft beers… and where you can listen to some vinyl while you’re  perusing the brews.  An interesting idea and one that also has some similarities to the Eel Pie Records / Ricardo’s Cellar thing on Church Street. Beer and music – two things that just kind of go together. Funny dat.

Back at the time of our last update, the new dental surgery on the corner of Heath Road and Heath Gardens had been just about to open for a long while. In the end it seems that the grand opening could be put off no longer, a name emerged, Refresh Dental, as did some positive feedback. It’s just up the road from the Richmond Dental Suite but it has a better grasp of geography than its competitor. It deserves a medal for that alone surely.

 

Refresh Dental, Heath Road

Next door to Refresh there is now the Brazilian Holistic Centre doing massage therapy. And just across the road in the Heathlands Close trading estate is Lotta from Stockholm where you can buy clogs and boots as well as bags, jewellery, Pappelina rugs (Google ’em).  All very Swedish. Lotta’s website can show you the full range of products.

In other news, on Heath Road what was the fashion boutique Biba Star has morphed into Bein Fashion still selling clothes but now with a range of gifts and accessories too. Nearby Happy Diner the Chinese Cafe where Cafe Fresh once was is closed for a long break and re-fit.  Not the dreaded Twickenham refurb we hope! Charity shop Fara has closed so we can all look forward to a different charity shop opening there soon. What a time to be alive!

And finally, readers will be pleased to hear that Peter the Florist who was turfed off his pitch at Twickenham Station to make way for the redevelopment has landed a new spot over in Teddington. Keep a look out for him on the corner of Broad Street and Church Road.  Given that they like to think of themselves as a bit posher than Twickenham over there in TW11, let’s hope it’s now, “Two bunches for six fifty, therrrrrrre!!”

 

And breathe outttttt….

 

LINK:

 

37 Comments

Filed under High Street Updates, Local Issues & News

37 responses to “The Summer 2017 High Street Update Spectacular

  1. David

    We have an M where I work in Victoria. it is very upmarket. I don’t see it lasting in Twickenham.

  2. Sir Christian Surname

    Sapori TW1 has a new owner.

  3. Steve P

    Rawalpindi opposite Cross Deep is closed for a refurb “until further notice”. Anywhere else this would be no cause for concern. The Indian takeaway next to the Royal Oak closed a while back with no sign of a new occupant yet. Similarly, La Serenata lies intact but empty like a secret portal to the 1970s.

  4. Riverside Voter

    It hasn’t made it to the Richmond and Twickenham Times (but then if it didn’t happen in Carsholton or get sent there in a press release Twickers news rarely does these days) but Machine Mart was raided on Tuesday night by three men clad entirely in black on black mopeds. Is that the 2017 equivalent of wearing a striped jersey and carrying a sack with swag written on it? Lots of witnesses, it was going home time from the pub, including being videoed by the residents in the flats around. They did not seem to leave with much either but then getting an angle grinder (the Hatton Garden robbers shopped for their kit there apparently i) on a moped would be challenging. Another challenge for our High Street businesses…. idiot robbers.

    Thanks for the update Twickerati. I hope Sweet Diner is actually being refurbished as their dumplings were really good, they had only just got the evening license.

    • Riverside Voter

      Just to underline my comment about the pitiful state of local journalism in the Richmond and Twickenham Times, the letters page, which so often served along with this site as a platform for the airing of local issues, today features in the e-newspaper a letter complaining about the rubbish between Epsom Sports Club and the hospital………

    • A. Robot (Mrs)

      With issues like that dominating the paper, RV, it sounds as if the R&T has gone hyperlocal……….for the residents of N.E Surrey.
      Still, I’m sure we all hope the rubbish problem is swiftly resolved for them ………..

  5. A. Robot (Mrs)

    Twickerati
    Sorry to have had to bother you with this and thanks for dealing with it so well.
    Apologies for the B**** mention too, and I understand why you had to remove it in the circumstances.
    Keep up the excellent work!

    • Alexis

      I’m sorry Twickerati, I rather hoped that Mrs Robot would reciprocate. Sadly she hasn’t. If I may remind you, this is what she wrote in a post on the Cable thread which you promptly closed:

      “Still no word from Bazza, Twickerati. Maybe he’s moved to Poland (nice right-wing government, no evil Lib Dems, plenty of gardening opportunities, no Sally). I should wind this discussion up now, Twick. Quit while you’re ahead.”

      Following my acceptance of the need to refrain from reaction, I did so and was disappointed to be greeted with the above bit of sycophancy dated August 1st from Mrs R.
      Teacher’s pet or what!
      Also; perhaps Mrs R could explain what ”the circumstances” are relating to her B**** (Barry Edwards/Domokrat) removal?
      Is there something else we should know?
      Alexis.

  6. Thanks for giving us a mention! 🙂 We’re not selling vinyl, but you can come a play your own on some lovely turntables 🙂

  7. A. Robot (Mrs)

    Twickerati
    My apologies. I posted a comment about the Royal Oak on this thread which was completely misunderstood by a poster. His response seemed to be a reaction to your ending the Vince Cable thread, which again, as the post of his which you removed yesterday demonstrated, was a complete misunderstanding of the situation. This is not the first time this peevish and personal aspect of his nature has been apparent and he seems to delight in spending an unhealthy amount of time on the internet ‘discovering’ things about me (and other contributors) which turn out to be completely false, a product of his obtuseness, and for which he never apologises. His ill-informed (and weird) misinterpretation of my Royal Oak post is typical. He is quite keen to dish it out but not too good at taking it. His obsession with me is becoming embarrassing and, I imagine, extremely boring for visitors to this site. I note that you have already removed two posts arising from his obsession.
    I enjoy using this site but it seems to be stretching your tolerance for it to be used as a platform for old people with too much time on their hands to clutter up scoring infantile points. I would prefer to simply ignore his posts but it’s difficult when they’re often very bitchy and personal.
    Please advise.

    • Alexis

      Twickerati,
      My apologies, although I do think I deserve the right to reply to Mrs Bot’s inaccurate and intemperate post.

      1. I did indeed have a post removed as you removed one from Mrs bot urging you to shut the Cable thread down and one from you agreeing to do so, did you not? I hope we still have a semi-level playing field, or do we?

      2. As to the rest of Mrs bot’s polemic, I leave other readers to decide who has lost the plot or does Mrs bot consider that thoroughly unpleasant personal attacks are the way forward? I don’t and hope other readers of a more good natured disposition agree with me. What’s so wrong with challenging someone like Mrs bot without being shouted down and subjected to a tirade of personal abuse for doing so as he or she has done here?
      Is that the new sort of democracy we have to look forward to? – I hope not.
      Alexis.

    • I don’t read the content of every comment. You were correct that that Baxza reference was unnecessary (can’t recall the exact words) hence initially shutting the thread to new comments and then thinking it better to delete that comment too. Having that debate spill into this unrelated thread is annoying. The direction of travel at the moment is to not allow any comments on new items. As to level playing fields, when things get annoying or too boring I shut them down, level or not. My priority is trying to produce a good blog that lots of people read.

    • Alexis

      My thanks to Twickerati for his clarification. I will do my level best to refrain from reacting to provocation from self-opinionated posters in future.
      Hopefully, he, she, it or them will exercise the same degree of restraint.

      Back to the subject. Does anyone know what is happening to the old Scruby’s furniture shop on Heath Road? Tesco were rumoured to have bought it but then opened their store in the old pub, which was, I think, The Red Lion.
      Alexis.

  8. A. Robot (Mrs)

    Well done to the Royal Oak for (a) eschewing a ‘quirky’ name, and (b) daring to ignore the Eleventh Commandment that thou shalt not venture outside the prescribed colour palette for contemporary retail premises viz F & B smoky-air force-blue-grey-Hague-Stiffkey-Downpipe.-Rees-Mogg

    • Alexis

      The bot really can’t seem to help herself can she, he or it?
      It takes quite some ingenuity to combine a sort of compliment to the Royal Oak whilst having a pop at ex-Tory Hague and current Tory retro-throwback, Rees-Mogg, about F & B colours! What have they got to do with the price of beer let alone paint? After all, the bot tells us that they are not using their paint anyway!
      Perhaps a little pause for thought before pounding the keyboard?
      Alexis.
      PS: We grew up in the era before F & B when purple Wrighton Californian kitchens were all the rage, if you could afford it. We couldn’t, so in our case it was MFI collected from their store on the Ivy Bridge estate in our tired old Austin Ambassador – does anyone else remember them or MFI?

    • A. Robot (Mrs)

      I think you’ll find that Downpipe, Stiffkey and, yes, Hague are all F&B colours, old fruit. But well done for spotting that Rees-Mogg is the odd one out.
      I’ll try to bear in mind your advice about pounding the keyboard (while leaving you to pound whatever you’re in the habit of pounding) as this latest example, like the many before, shows that it’s an area where you have experience in depth.

    • Alexis

      Oooh Mrs bot – you are awful! – what a tasteless double entendre.
      For an old fruitbat who sneers at F & B colours, you seem to know more about them than I do, so best I leave you to the solitary pounding (of your keyboard).
      Alexis.

  9. KW

    Twickenham Osteopaths (were based at the Maple Leaf) have relocated to one of the rooms at Refresh Dental

  10. Anonymous

    Very well written and useful update, keep ’em coming – thank you!

  11. Anonymous

    Twickenham is in London.

    • Anonymous

      How can it be when the address is Twickenham, Middlesex?

      Heath Road is hardly London. The owners of salt flakes need a geography lesson.

    • twickerman

      Middlesex hasn’t existed for decades.
      Twickenham is in Greater London.

    • Ex-Twickenham Resident

      in the old days – 01 for London. My telephone number was definitely 01 – 892 XXXX . QED – Twickenham has and is classed as London albeit Greater or SW London.

    • Juliet

      Wikipedia – Twickenham is a leafy affluent suburban area of south west London, on the River Thames in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames 10 miles (16 km) southwest of the centre of London.All residents vote in the London Mayoral election.

    • illiad

      and nobody really believes wikipedia, it is so often hacked by detractors, that famous people usually find facts about themselves they did not know!
      the only thing ‘reliable’ are the **boring** stuff, that they don’t bother to hack..

    • illiad

      No Middlesex??? I think many would prove you wrong!!
      Middlesex County Cricket Club
      West Middlesex hospital,
      and 139 post offices in that county!!
      https://www.yell.com/s/post+offices-middlesex.html

    • illiad

      Ex-Twickenham Resident: there were many companies who were given an ‘outside london ‘ 081 (it was then changed to 0208) code, and paid lots of money to change it to a 071 code to get the ‘prestige’ of being london! (even though their postcode was TW8!!)

      great days, when BT had to change all the phonecodes 2 or 3 times!!! 😀 😀

  12. Andrew

    It’s been said before but Eel Pie Records is just wonderful… please support it!

  13. Micio

    In other news a gym will be opening on the ground floor here:

    http://www.movehut.co.uk/property/520974-twickenham-house-159-heath-road-twickenham/?k=0

    90k rent. Phew.

    And there is a planning application to be heard next week to turn that ugly parade of shops up from the station next door to the PK chippy into a gym.

    There will be so many gyms in Twix soon.

    Rileys will be closing and turning into a gym. Permission has been granted.

    Twickenham Medical Practice opposite the green has closed down. It lasted less than a year.

    • I guess someone has spotted that the Brewers Wharf bunch across the road will need a gym.
      The ugly parade used to include McClements btw – boy, could he cook.

    • twickerman

      Mr McC is still cooking. Just not in Twickers anymore. His empire has moved over the river.

      The proposed F45 gym will be at the back of 2-6 Whitton Road, so it won’t affect the retail facade. I suggest you don’t take your P45 expecting a discount from the £195/month membership fee!
      It’s recommended for Permission at planning committee next week.

      BTW, Brewery Market will be in front of the gym at 2 Whitton Road. I wonder if they’ll jump on the bandwagon and feature some pumping protein enhanced recovery ales?

      BTW2, The M restaurant is a relation of the Gaucho Grill.

      It’s good to see some life being breathed back into this area known by developers as the Gateway to Twickenham, or more commonly as the Arse End of Twickenham. Hopefully more of the former in future (in 3-5 years when Solum Towers construction is over and done with).

  14. Micio

    I love the way salt flakes are promoting their restaurant as being in London…. Even the website is saltflakeslondon.co.uk

    Twix is the new London….

    • Boss

      Twickenham is in the London Borough of Richmond.

    • illiad

      well until the post code is something like SWxx, it will NOT be london…

      foreigners always laugh about us having 3 or 4 ways to describe a location!!

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