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Harringay, Haringey - So Good they Spelt it Twice!

The following on the popular new Riley's Ice cream shop in Crouch End from the Hornsey Journal:


Riley opened five weeks ago on the site of the former Propsero's Bookshop. Picture: Tony Gay 


Five weeks after opening Riley in The Broadway, Crouch End, has been told it cannot operate as an “ice cream coffee bar”.

Haringey Council rejected a planning bid for the former Prospero’s Bookshop to be used as a cafe because of the loss of an “important shopping unit”.

Owner Will Riley, an ex-banker who lives in Islington, said: “I am devastated, absolutely devastated. My heart, my soul and a huge sum of money has gone into building a wonderful business. The feedback we’ve had from the people of Crouch End has been absolutely spectacular.”

The business plans to appeal the decision and can continue trading in the meantime.

“We will by hook or by crook find a way of continuing because we’ve built up a very loyal clientele within a very short period of time,” said Mr Riley. “The people of Crouch End have been absolutely great.”

Tags for Forum Posts: crouch end, riley

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From the officer's report:


"The application site is an existing shop, which contributes to the viability of the primary frontage especially given its prominent location within the heart of the shopping area."


Except, of course, that it had closed down.


I see The Italian Foodhall objected on the grounds that too many cafes "increase competition", as if that were a bad thing.




Not saying my sympathies lie particularly on one side or the other -- I can certainly understand the decision -- just observing..  But I wonder how realistic the desire for a high proportion of retail is in some areas.

Don't understand the council's decision but also cannot believe the current owner sunk money into this venture before getting planning permission!
I'm with Matt, very silly to not have the planning permission in order before starting the work. However, planning needs to let this go and focus on the real issues around here, the constant stream of HMOs and the fake paperwork they're submitting in order to get their COLs.
My guess is that these very self-confident guys are getting their knuckles rapped for ignoring planning protocols. The number of empty shops in Crouch End is higher than on Green Lanes. I can't see the sense in keeping another place empty - unless of course existing operators can make the case that Rileys will be that waffer-thin-mint.
One of the guys is an experienced restauranteur so it may just be that he knows exactly what he 's doing and is playing the odds.
I agree it would serve them right if they had to spend the extra dosh on appealing in order to win, but I think it wouldn't be right for the appeal to fail. Empty shops beget empty shops.

And if Mr Riley & Partner had opened their Betting Shop, Cement Factory or even Estate Agency two weeks after applying for a change of use, what would we be saying about their 'heart and soul', their loyal clientele's feedback, or their avowed intention to find a way of continuing 'by hook or by crook'?

On the other hand, I wonder how well the Italian Foodhall's retail contribution to Crouch End compares with that of the Powerhouse retailer which they replaced. But as I prefer their Pannetone and Perugini Baci to any Hoover or Dyson products, I'm not objecting.

I have been told that Spiazzo Italian Coffee shop (the one objecting to the planning application) is part of a very large coffee house chain based in Italy. i've been told they are the Italian equivalent to Starbucks. Can anyone here on HoL verify/refute this rumour ?
I don't know about Italy, but they've got a sandwich bar in London Bridge, and I'm pretty sure they're the same people who ran a very nice Spiazzo restaurant at HIghbury Corner about 10 years ago.
Thanks SarahC* The Crouch end branch is very nice also, i was just wondering about the Italian connection ?
Spiazzo lost my family's custom when they took out all their high chairs. Even when my youngest is old enough to use a proper chair, we won't be going back, as they evidently don't need my money
Really? They've removed the high chairs? Great - that means I can go and enjoy a quiet coffee then, without kiddie screams, now they'll get my money instead. Yay!

I agree Anette. I'll be paying a visit to Spiazzo's now I know I won't have to deal with little brats spoiling a nice coffee!



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