It always sucks when your company ends up closing down, but you might want to look at yourself before you blame a subset of people for something that you probably could have stopped happening if you hadn’t been so stuck in your ways.
This is the accusation that I’m launching at Simon Clarke, the former proprietor of AJ Goddard’s Pie And Mash in Deptford, South East London. Even though the establishment has been serving pie and mash for 128 years, Simon has been forced to shut up shop and move to Kent to open up a new venture after a year of dwindling revenues.
And Simon is pretty clear about who is to blame for his woes – he’s laying all the blame for this squarely at the feet of the new vegan revolution that seems to be sweeping London. Here’s what he had to say:
I don’t know if it’s the oldest but it’s definitely one of the oldest. People that have moved in around here over the last few years are definitely into fad diets.
I’ve had a few people come in off the streets asking if I do vegan pies. It’s like some kind of bad joke – we’re a traditional pie and mash shop, of course we don’t sell vegan pies.
Some people just come in just to be nosey because these old places like this you don’t get anymore. Someone asked for breakfast but I can’t as you can’t call it a pie and mash shop then.
The only thing that’s missing is the sawdust on the floor. Everyone’s moved away and my clientele is not here no more.
The queue was hanging out the door but now it’s dribs and drabs. Now half the people who walk past the shop don’t know what pie and mash is.
I must admit there are mornings I wish I didn’t get out of bed because my clientele has disappeared. It is not what it used to be.
We still have a good laugh with customers. Most of the regulars I class as family and friends. They have got to know me and I have got to know them. It is wicked.
It’s going to be a sad day when we close. I will have a tear in my eye, there’s nothing I can do. I think I might throw a party and go out with a bang.
I mean like I said at the start of this, it sucks that he’s had to close it down but he doesn’t seem to understand that things change and develop over time. He could have at least made a go of it by adding a vegan pie or breakfast to the menu or something because that was actually what people were asking for? But instead he just stuck stubbornly to his guns and refused to change and went down with a sinking ship.
It seems obvious to me that if people aren’t coming to the shop anymore then you need to change the menu or at least add other options to it or something? Seems dumb that he would just keep doing the same thing over and over again hoping it would get better when it clearly wasn’t working and people were ACTUALLY ASKING for other food.
Maybe it’s true that richer people moving to the area are into fad diets etc but I think if that’s the case and you know that then you need to add some of these fad diet items to the menu so that these new people come in in addition to your old clientele. That’s like the first rule of business dude so I can’t feel that sorry for you.
Hope there are less vegans and people into fad diets down in Kent though sure. Best of luck to you pal.
For more pie and mash, check out this job you can now get where you get paid to eat pies. Maybe Simon should apply for that.