Couple to open their Sidmouth cafe on Christmas Day

PUBLISHED: 07:00 21 December 2017 | UPDATED: 12:18 21 December 2017

John Hammond and his family have taken over The Dairy Shop in Church Street, Sidmouth

John Hammond and his family have taken over The Dairy Shop in Church Street, Sidmouth

Archant

A couple are opening the doors to their Sidmouth café to anyone, young or old, who faces spending Christmas Day alone.

It has been a long-held ambition for John and Kirsty Hammond and one they could realised when they took over the Dairy Shop earlier this year.

After the service at All Saints Church, they will be offering tea, coffee, mince pies made by the congregation and a chance to chat to anyone who wants to go in.

John said: “It was a conversation we had almost two years ago. A friend of ours is a single mum who said going to Spar was the only contact she had on Christmas Day.

“Sidmouth’s community lunch is great, but not everyone wants to sit down for a meal. Some people just want company. This is the perfect place to do it. It’s amazing we’re able to offer that on Christmas Day. We put it on Facebook and it’s been seen 5,500 times – and tweeted to Jeremy Vine’s 650,000 followers.

“A lot of comments online said it’s great for older people who can’t see their family at Christmas but there also are single parents on their own that might want to go, or teenagers that don’t have a good Christmas at home and want to get out. They can all sit and have a coffee.”

During term time, the café also hosts a weekly session for youngsters that has a decent following. The sessions will resume in the new year.

The Dairy Shop, in Church Street, will open on Christmas Day from 12.30pm to 2.30pm.

Over in St Teresa’s Hall, the Christmas Day community lunch is this year being run by Emma Donovan, who takes over from from Angie and Mick Carney.

With support from her mum, dad and brother, the event will cater for 50 guests who would otherwise spend the day alone, and some 40 volunteers.

Diners will be picked up from 10.30am and enjoy a quiz before lunch time. There will be entertainment before the afternoon finishes with a mince pie and the Queen’s speech.

Emma said: “If we can cook a bit of meat and veg and that makes people happy, that’s the main thing.”

And in Newton Poppleford, David and Rosemary Zirker will be hosting a free festive meal in the Pavilion for anyone who faces spending Christmas Day alone from 12.30pm. Call 01395 567430 or email d.zirker@btinternet.com in advance for tickets.

Comments have been disabled on this article.

Other News Stories

Residents will be able to benefit from free blood pressure checks this weekend thanks to the Sid Valley Rotary Club.

Read more

The shop at Sidmouth’s petrol station was raided by teenagers on the hunt for booze, it’s believed.

Read more

A Romanian vagrant has admitted raiding 11 churches to finance a three month summer holiday in Devon and Dorset.

Read more

An Ottery man who grew 23 cannabis plants, worth up to £19,000, in his garage to help with his bad back has been handed a community order.

Read more

Ottery residents better beware as mischievous pixies prepare to descend on the town next weekend.

Read more

Beekeepers in East Devon are on high alert as the battle against the Asian hornet hots up.

Read more
Yesterday, 20:00

Highway bosses have submitted fresh opposition to a new proposed business park at Sidford as ‘nothing has changed since the last time’.

Read more
Yesterday, 17:27

For one Sidmouth woman, the historic meeting between US President Donald Trump and the North Korean leader Kim Jong-un had a particular poignancy.

Read more
Yesterday, 16:30

Residents across the Ottery and West Hill parishes are being encouraged to head to the polls next week to vote 
in a referendum about the area’s proposed Neighbourhood Plan.

Read more
Yesterday, 15:30

A successful weekend, including three sell out talks, means Sidmouth Literary Festival has now firmly set its deckchair on the front esplanade of literary events across the country.

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 18°C

min temp: 8°C

Most Read News

Useful Links

Family notices
Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Submit a Story
Buy Photos
Competitions
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Image
Read the Sidmouth Herald e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Sidmouth Herald twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Local business directory

Devon's trusted business finder

Show Job Lists


Find planning applications