For many of us the bills and cost of living crisis has made a real impact in 2022.
It has hit the hospitality sector hard too with lots of venues forced out of business. Following the impact of the coronavirus pandemic and the financial uncertainty of the last 12 months many businesses just couldn’t survive.
We’ve taken a look back at some of the Yorkshire restaurants, bars and shops we’ve sadly said goodbye to in 2022. Some were real Yorkshire institutions and others making their way in the competitive hospitality sector.
Our round up features former venues in major locations such as Sheffield, York, Leeds and Huddersfield as well as community favourites loved by locals. In this article, you’ll find details of what forced the closures and the farewell messages many of the teams had for their loyal customers.
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Yard and Coop
In July, the chicken restaurant, which has branches in Manchester and Liverpool, closed its doors in Leeds. At the time, the team said: “After three years of slinging chicken in Merrion Street, it is with a heavy heart that we have decided to close our restaurant in Leeds. We’ve made so many friends and loyal customers over the years, but we just need to pause and reassess all the costs thrown at us. Our team means the world to us and we are so sad to be closing our doors.”
The Woolpack County Inn
In December, the team at The Woolpack Country Inn, Whitley Road, Dewsbury, took to Facebook to announce their decision. They’ve cited the ‘astronomical’ cost of bills and a ‘lack of local support’ from some sections of the community for some of the reasons why they’ve closed.
An extract from their post reads: “It is with a heavy heart we have made the decision to close the Woolpack. We have recently been running on reduced hours to limit how much we are spending on bills however this is still an astronomical cost.”
The Black Market
In October, the team at The Black Market confirmed their closure and plans for The Cat’s Pyjama’s to replace it. They posted: “It saddens us to have to inform you that with just over four years of serving you lovely people we’ve had to finally close our doors due to circumstances! But it definitely is not the end for us.”
The owners of Aakash on Bradford Road have taken to Facebook to confirm its closure in November. The team posted: “As many of you are already aware, the building is being sold and the new owners don’t want to operate as a restaurant. We want to thank all of our wonderful customers for their support over the last 22 years.”
There was lots of excitement when the world-famous brand opened in the Leeds city centre venue. Sadly, at the end of January, boxes of stock were spotted being packed up and the store closed for good soon after.
Meat is Dead
Vegan restaurant Meat is Dead announced plans for a temporary closure in the summer. It has yet to reopen at its Kirkstall base. At the time, they posted: “This is not a permanent goodbye, it’s a pause, a shake up and a new beginning. “We, like everyone, have been hit with crippling costs and hard hitting times, we are incredibly sad to pause right now but this is a must for us to be able to continue in any capacity.
“We thank you all for supporting, visiting and returning – each and every single one of you have made our dream and exhaustion worthwhile.”
Carousel featured a bar and restaurant, along with an arcade packed with iconic and nostalgic games as well as an outdoor terrace. The whole upper floor was transformed into a games room with all the latest amusements.
The bar employed mixologists and its food ranged from Oriental Duck Noodles & Fish Tacos, to Beef Brisket & Halloumi Sticks, with Korean Bao Buns. Unfortunately, it only lasted nine months in Huddersfield town centre.
Many were extremely sad to see the Wetherby institution close its doors. Posting on Facebook, the team said: “It is with a heavy heart that we have decided to close Sant’ Angelo’s restaurant on Sunday, September 25. We have been in the restaurant industry for over 30 years – 13 of them at Sant Angelo’s. We have worked hard to provide authentic, family-focused Italian food at affordable prices for people in Wetherby and beyond.
“There have been ups and downs throughout the years, but no time has been as hostile to the survival of small businesses as now. From Covid to Brexit to staff shortages to spiralling gas and electricity prices, with the best will in the world we cannot keep operating in this environment. And so, with great regret, we have decided to close our doors and retire.
“We would like to thank our loyal customers and our hard-working staff, especially our head chef Oliver Hart who made Sant’ Angelo’s so much of what it was.”
Năm Sông shut their Vietnamese restaurant earlier this year. The restaurant team described the second outlet as an amazing experience but said it has been forced into the decision.
A spokesperson for Năm Sông said: “A bit of sad news for you all but unfortunately, we’ve taken the very tough decision to close our Sharrow Vale site. We’ve opened up our unit in Dyson Place following the first covid lockdown and we’ve had a great few years as part of the sunniest square in Sharrow Vale but recent cost pressures and economic conditions have meant we’ve had to take the decision to consolidate our Sheffield operations to just one site.”
Thankfully, fans of their food can still enjoy the offering at Năm Sông in Fulwood Road.
George’s Great British Kitchen
There was anger and confusion in Leeds on Father’s Day when punters arrived at George’s Great British Kitchen to discover it had shut down. The once-popular restaurant in The Light, Headrow, Leeds city centre, which opened in 2017 is now permanently closed. Customers turned up to the venue on Father’s Day to find a sign reading ‘this restaurant is now closed for business’.
The Dore Grill
Beloved Sheffield pub and restaurant The Dore Grill has sadly closed after 36 years in business.
The restaurant in Church Lane was run by Joe, Dolores, and Liz for over three decades and was inundated with five star reviews. The news of the closure has left Sheffield residents and loyal customers “devastated”.
The rising cost of living crisis has had a detrimental affect on the business, leaving the venue with ‘no chance’ to keep running. Owners confirmed the news on Facebook and said: “It is with the greatest regret that I must announce that the old adage ‘use it or lose it’, has come true.”
They added: “We may have five star reviews on TripAdvisor but that has made no difference to our customers numbers. As of tonight, The Dore Grill is permanently closed.
“We are too upset to post more at the moment. We have tried our best to keep going but the costs are too great. The large chains can weather the storm but tiny family owned businesses like ours have had no chance.
“Thanks all to our regular customers for your support over the last 36 years. Liz, Neil and all our fantastic staff and chefs.”
The Yorkshire Bar and Kitchen
The owner of the bar blamed “increasing costs and decreasing footfall” as the main reasons for the closure of the Huddersfield venue. The venue, which set out to ‘showcase the best of God’s own county’, used local produce and served tapas, small plates, pizzas and a selection of locally brewed beers.
In April, Morley restaurant and Bar Different Gravy shut down. It was known for its 50 different gin collections and pub grub accompanied with lots of gravy. It won praise from punters for its friendly staff and cheap prices.
The Station Masters House
In September, we brought you news of Bingley venue The Station Masters House closing. The owners said the annual electric bill was rising from £8,500 to around £36,000, and other costs were also going up such as fish, chicken, beer and soft drinks. In a post on social media, the owners said: “It is with sadness and regret we have to announce The Station Masters will be closed for the foreseeable future.”
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The Graze Inn and The Eagle
Two popular Ecclesall Road bars closed within days of each other back in the autumn. We had to say goodbye to both The Graze Inn and neighbouring venue The Eagle.
In July, the owners issued a statement announcing the closure of Kwas. It read: “Now more than ever, it comes with great sadness that we have to announce that Kwas Wine Shop and Bar is closing. As of the end of the month we will no longer be serving the lovely people of Huddersfield and our last day will be Sunday July 31.
“We are absolutely devastated and it definitely hasn’t been an easy decision – the past 18 months-or-so have been emotional, to say the least – such a rollercoaster ride – but sadly this has been a necessary decision, for a whole load of reasons that have affected everyone, and that are still affecting everyone, not just us small hospitality businesses.
“This news might come as even more of a surprise given we moved next door only a few mere months ago. A bigger, better Kwas, complete with bakery-in-residence, was us trying to turn a hustle into something more sustainable, but it wasn’t to be. At least not right now.”
Le Cochon Aveugle
Another closure in 2022 was York restaurant Le Cochon Aveugle. Joshua Overington said: ““We have had an amazing time running Le Cochon Aveugle over the past eight years and achieved more than we could have hoped for.”