We love shining a light on the awesome businesses that are regenerating high streets all over the UK. One business that used their Start Up Loan from Virgin StartUp to kit out their physical premises is super-cool cafe-bar Henry C, providing residents and visitors to Chorlton, Manchester, with New Orleans-inspired cocktails and food. Let's find out more.
1. Explain your business in thirty seconds or less
Henry C is an intimate cocktail bar serving high quality food and drinks. We pride ourselves on excellent serving creating a cosy and relaxed atmosphere for our customers to switch off from the world.
2. Where are you based and why is it a good location for your business?
We are based in the suburban town Chorlton, just a few miles outside Manchester city centre. The area has many boutique shops, cafes, pubs and restaurants.
3. How did you come up with the idea?
We had been managing some of the best bars and music venues in the North West for several years and fancied to try it out for ourselves. Getting to know the area we realised a cocktail bar was much needed and would be enjoyed by the local residents, as well as those after an evening retreat away from Manchester’s overcrowded nightlife.
4. What stage was your business at when you applied for the StartUp Loan?
Scrap-books, simple budgets and early day planning had taken over our house. A site perfect for the bar had just popped up, and then we knew it was time to apply.
5. How have you used it to grow your business?
The money was used for the build. Without it we wouldn’t have been able to start up, so it basically made all of this happen!
6. Who helped you get a loan from Virgin StartUp?
June Poree was our mentor who helped us with budgets and the business plan. We gained a lot of insight into how to polish our plans, and great advice on prioritising our workload.
7. Biggest achievement so far?
Being open! Everyday we get to open our doors to our wonderful loyal customers who keep us in high spirits, and remind us exactly why we took on this venture. Everything seems so overwhelming to start with, but a few months down the line and it's like you’ve been doing it all your life.
8. What’s next for your business?
We have a second room to the rear of our building. We will be decking this out as extra seating and creating a little drinking den for more people to enjoy.
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