West Hill man toasts coffee book success

PUBLISHED: 11:00 27 September 2008 | UPDATED: 11:15 17 June 2010

ASPIRING coffee shop owners around the world have been picking the brains of a retired West Hill man who turned his hand to writing in a bid to stave off boredom.

ASPIRING coffee shop owners around the world have been picking the brains of a retired West Hill man who turned his hand to writing in a bid to stave off boredom.

Don Clarke, 72, has used years of expertise in designing and running shops and businesses around Devon to publish How To Set Up A Coffee Shop.

The downloadable book, released in January, has since garnered interest in China and America and is soon to be published in Turkey.

Don, who spent 35 years as a shop fitter and interior designer, sees his new venture as a way of keeping busy an imparting some of his knowledge to budding business people, especially in the current financial climate.

He said: "If I had had this information when I started out, I would have saved months of trial and error and thousands of pounds. I didn't want a retirement where I was doing nothing, this gives me something to do a couple of days a week.

I've always wanted to see if there was money to be made in the internet, its been a good exercise to take on, try something new and make a living without working 60 hours a week.

It's also a way of giving something back, I would have loved this knowledge when I started out."

The "foolproof" guide, which covers aspects from budgeting and health and safety to recruitment and marketing , has picked up favourable reviews from trade magazines and world domination is very much on Mr Clarke's mind.

He added: "The principles are the same the world over, and the great thing about the internet is it can be downloaded in any country."

Publisher Tracey Beaney said: "Coffee originated in Turkey so it is quite ironic Don is telling people there how to set up a coffee shop.

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