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We asked all eight cafes and restaurants on Lords Place if they'd be using the pods

April 6, 2023

Manager Raj and employee Charlotte at Hog's Breath Cafe. Raj said head office would make the call on the pod. Copyright: Orange News Examiner.

By Peter Holmes

Of the eight restaurants and cafes along the redeveloped section of Lords Place, two have told The Orange News Examiner that they will accept Orange City Council’s offer of rent-free exclusive use of the new dining pods for 12 months.

Four have said they are not interested, while two are still considering the option.

We spoke to owners or senior staff at all eight of the hospitality venues on that strip of Lords Place over the last fortnight: cafes Crema on Lords, Good Eddy and Nimrod and restaurants Alfio’s Pizzeria, Golden Bowl Chinese, Lords Place Thai, Elwood’s Eatery and Hog’s Breath Cafe.

The two venues that will take advantage of the 12-month offer are cafes Crema on Lords and Good Eddy.

They will have exclusive use of the pods and in return will have to furnish them and pay for public liability insurance. Both said they would set up furniture each day and then store it within their shops overnight.

The businesses that have said no to the offer are cafe Nimrod, Elwood’s barbecue joint (which is moving to the Great Western Hotel), Lords Place Thai and Alfio’s.

Two - Hog’s Breath and Golden Bowl Chinese - are still considering the offer. The decision for Hog's Breath Cafe will be made by head office.

Any pods that are left unclaimed by business will be the responsibility of the council to furnish, maintain and insure.

Meanwhile, deputy mayor Gerald Power has continued to back the controversial development.

He acknowledged that councillors had received written communications from businesses on Lords Place expressing their views about the months-long redevelopment.

He accepted that it had been a difficult time for businesses, but said the council had been “continuously providing support to them” and had been “accommodating”. He pointed to the example of $20 vouchers given away via a radio station that could be used at Lords Place businesses.

He told The Orange News Examiner that one letter complained about slow trade on a particular day, but said that on that same day many businesses around Orange had experienced similar.

He said that he and the mayor Jason Hamling were both small businesspeople, and “I’ve taken a hit, the mayor’s taken a hit”.

“We’ve got to take a broader (view),” he said. Once the tables are in place it will build up.”

The full buffet of our Lords Place redevelopment stories is here.

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