Number 178 closed

Number 178, the New Cross cafe that combined quality, low prices and social purpose, has closed. The move is permanent, as founder Luke explains:

Unfortunately we were unable to reach financial sustainability. As a social enterprise we had to certain restrictions on how we could operate and adapt to changes in the market. A lot of businesses are feeling a prolonged squeeze at the moment due to stagnant wages and increased competition. 

Furthermore our end of New Cross Rd is slowly filling up with high profit margin/low overheads businesses such as estate agents which kills off a healthy independent business ecosystem.

However, Luke and the brand could be making a local comeback in some form soon. He promises more details as soon as he's able to share them.


Scott said...

This is really sad. I live in Hatcham Park and popped over for food at No 178 most weekends over the last few months.

But Luke is right, that end of New Cross Road is just filled with low overhead businesses and estate agents - there are now three in a row by the Five Bells pub!

I thought No 178 would be the catalyst for similar businesses at this end of New Cross, but it just seems destined for perennial stagnation.

Oh well, Luke, good luck with whatever comes next and good luck to the rest of the friendly team who ran that brilliant cafe.

Brockley Nick said...

I think it is also a reminder to all those who regularly complain about the prices at local businesses - these places are rarely cash cows. Keeping them going is hard work and they need to charge prices that keep them in business. No 178 set out its stall as a low-cost option and it shows how hard it is to make that work.

Max Calò said...

I just saw this petition, is this true?

Jennifer said...

Noo we went nearly every weekend best thing next to telegraph hill not as far as the gantry :( definiatly miss 178

anonymous said...

It is really sad that No. 178 has closed. It was a great spacious venue with a very relaxed atmosphere and friendly staff. But to be brutally honest the food was okay but never quite good enough to attract enough people to make the place work. Anywhere that has great food and coffee will attract people whether it's next to an estate agent or a pub. I wish them all the best and hope that someone else can make the place work.

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