New business grows from Covid-19 redundancies
- Credit: Mick Howes
A mother and daughter who were both made redundant during the continuing coronavirus crisis have pooled their resources and set up an enterprising coffee and soup takeaway business in a coastal town.
Judith Walker Brown and her daughter Isobelle, from Fritton, had discussed setting up a coffee takeaway business.
So when they were both made redundant they took the opportunity to make what was previously a dream a reality.
Mrs Walker Brown said: “We bought an empty van and my husband converted it for us.
"We got licensed and decided to come set up in Pakefield. After some initial problems with our first site, the Rev Sharon Lord offered us a pitch here on private land in front of Pakefield Church.
“The community here in Pakefield has literally given us the biggest hug ever – we have been very lucky.”
She added: “We decided to call the business ‘Bizzy’s Coffee’ as my daughter Isobel has been nicknamed Bizzy from birth.”
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Judith had been in the beauty industry for over 20 years and worked for L’Oreal Paris selling perfume and make up while based in Debenhams in Norwich.
But then with the pandemic she took redundancy.
Isobel worked for The Cornish Bakery in Southwold where she had been trained to brew coffee and make recipes – to ensure it tastes correct and not too bitter or too sour.
She also worked in Jarrolds in Norwich in the coffee bar in the basement for six months and became a fully qualified Barista when she was 17.
Isobel said: “When I was made redundant in June because of Covid we started this project.
"It’s been quite rapid having bought the van in September and then converting it - we had it ready for trading in November."
Mrs Walker Brown added: “As well as coffee and hot chocolate, we sell soups as well.
"Every morning I make a new batch of homemade soup. It is always fresh and always different.
"If we haven’t sold all the soup on the day we do take it to a homeless shelter in Lowestoft at night and donate whatever we have left over - so nothing goes to waste.
“We also offer sweet pastries, muffins and shortbreads on one day a week and they sell really well.
“Our arrival in Pakefield has been really good for us as well as for the community.
"We are a friendly face and someone to talk to."