Help needed for CBD to buzz
KENT Street Bakery is “like a little honey pot” but attracting council working bees is proving tougher than expected.
Michelle Caine said, despite running a busy bakery, she was battling the odds when it came to keeping up appearances.
“There's a garden bed out the front with nothing in it and we don't have the bollards other shops have that protect customers who sit at the tables and chairs on the footpath from traffic. Cars just pull straight into the car parks right next to them.”
Ms Caine was responding to Vince Rovere's comments in the Chronicle last week when he said the Fraser Coast council should introduce a by-law that forced landlords to maintain their buildings in styles that complemented the streetscape.
While she and husband Heath do not own the building – it is leased from the former Brumby's bakery owner – they agree with Mr Rovere but say the council is doing nothing to help the situation.
“I asked the council about getting bollards and was told yes, we could get them, but at our expense,” said Ms Caine, who worked with Brumby's for 13 years before taking over.
“I went on holidays and when I came back (Brumbies) had closed. The owners offered me a deal and I went into this bright-eyed and bushy-tailed.”
The doom and gloom hovering over Maryborough's CBD since at least five shops closed within a month early this year is putting a dampener on her confidence, however.
“We're not closing. It's like a little honey pot here,” she said. “We're not going anywhere but our customers are nervous.”
On the simmering issue of seven-day trading, she said the shop operated seven days a week, opening to 3pm on Saturday and Sunday.
“We employ three bakers and three front staff plus ourselves and usually work it so we have a day off on a weekend and a day during the week.”
A new group, formed under the Maryborough Chamber of Commerceumbrella and dedicated to improving the CBD, is holding its next meeting on Friday from 7am at Wesley Uniting Employment, 276 Kent Street. All interested business people are invited to attend.
RSVP to Daniel Sanderson on 4120 2568.