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Coffee shop growth threatens future of traditional British cafés

20 April 2006 by

The UK's growing Continental-style coffee culture is threatening the survival of the great British greasy spoon, according to HP Sauce.

The sauce maker has launched a Save the Proper British Cafe campaign, warning that unless action is taken now, traditional British cafés could be a thing of the past by 2010.

A survey of 5,000 consumers showed that one in three people know of a café closing down in their neighbourhood, while 87% admitted to being concerned that their local high street was becoming overrun by coffee chain stores

Paul Harvey, marketing manager at HP Sauce, said: "Britain has already suffered the demise of proper British institutions like the red phone box and the faithful Routemaster bus, which is why it seems so important to save the British café."

HP has created a fighting fund to help British cafés combat the threat of Continental-style coffee shops, which it has kick-started with a £5,000 contribution. Wrist bands at £1.50 are also available from its website.

It is also sponsoring Proper British Breakfast Week, encouraging people to eat a proper British breakfast during the week of 24-28 April.

For more information and to show your support, go to www.proper-british.co.uk.

By Jessica Gunn

Battle of the breakfasts

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