Express & Star

Eat Out To Help Out scheme sees customers flock to Wolverhampton cafe

"It's been like a Saturday on a Monday as we've been that busy with people coming in."

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Manager Lee Smith helps promote the government scheme, which offers 50 per cent discount at participating venues for punters

The first day of the Government's Eat Out To Help Out scheme to encourage a return to cafes, pubs and restaurants has seen customers flock to venues across the region.

Vanilla Coffee in Tettenhall is one of many to take part in the scheme, which gives people a discount of up to 50 per cent when eating or drinking soft drinks.

There was a steady flow of customers coming into the cafe throughout the day, enjoying freshly made hot drinks, cakes and sandwiches in a socially distanced setting.

Owner Carole Ashworth said the scheme was a great way to reward her loyal customers

Owner Carole Ashworth said the scheme was a great way to reward her loyal customers and also help plenty of new customers into the cafe.

The 56-year-old said: "We've seen a lot of new people, which is great, and while I anticipate the next few weeks being crazy.

"It's great to reward the people who have supported us for the last seven years."

Bob and Mel Fearn have been coming to Vanilla Coffee for 15 years as a daily treat

Bob Fearn had been going to Vanilla Coffee with his wife Mel for more than 15 years and spoke about the benefits the scheme would have.

The 87-year-old said: "I was delighted when I found out this place was participating in the scheme as it will have tremendous benefits for the whole community.

"My wife and I love coming here for a coffee and some cake as our daily treat and the scheme will help bring so many new people into what is a wonderful place."

Sisters Kay Hack and Elaine Beveridge enjoy a coffee at Vanilla Coffee in Tettenhall

Kay Hack lives near the cafe and said small businesses like Vanilla would get a real impact from the scheme.

The 59-year-old said: "It can ensure businesses like this stay afloat in this tough time and also help provide a community hub to help with mental wellbeing."