Huddersfield cafe's owner says 'pernicious people' putting £50,000 investment in peril

Vietnamese spring rolls are on the menu at Oi Dumplings
-Credit: (Image: Oi Dumplings)


Around 2,000 people have backed a cafe's battle to secure an alcohol licence amid accusations of 'pernicious individuals' trying to scupper the plan.

Maisie Davies, owner of Cafe Oi/Oi Dumplings in Marsden, in Huddersfield's Colne Valley, started the petition this month to allow the relocating cafe to sell alcohol when it opens in Peel Street in July in premises formerly occupied by Mario's.

The business, described as an Asian fusion restaurant, is due to open new premises which represents an investment of around £50,000 and, according to the owners, the lack of an alcohol licence could mean the end of their dream. The cafe used to be based just around the corner and won awards for its food.

Read more: We spent an hour at Huddersfield's street drinking hotspot and it was chaotic

Maisie's petition was in response to what the cafe's owners described as the actions of a "small group of pernicious individuals" who she said were "vehemently against us serving alcohol or opening later than 6pm".

In a statement earlier this month, Oi Dumplings said a small group of people had been urging others to sign a petition against the cafe serving alcohol.

"We are absolutely devastated that the wills and wishes of a small group of pernicious individuals stands to threaten everything that we have worked so hard to create.

"So far, we have invested our life savings into 9 Peel Street. The current renovation cost is already over £50,000. Money we want to invest into a village that we love."

The cafe owners said the aim was to create a coffee shop that turns into evening diner, and not a 'late night bar', but said they needed to be able to sell alcohol to survive as a business.

"If we cannot serve alcohol at our place, then there is a strong likelihood that everything we have invested into our business will be for nothing and that Oi will cease to exist."

Get all the latest What’s On news straight to your inbox by signing up to our newsletter here.

The cafe owners asked people to send letters of support to the licensing committee at Kirklees Council which is due to meet on July 3.

In a separate statement on June 13, owners Mollie Power and Maisie Davies thanked people who signed the petition and the 150 people who had written letters of support.

"For us to have the best chance at winning this thing, it's essential for you to be present on the day to share your thoughts during the hearing. If you can spare the time, your presence would be greatly valued Let's ensure our voices are heard loud and clear."

Just short of 2,000 people have backed the cafe's petition as of Saturday, June 22.

One man who signed it posted: "This restaurant will be a huge asset to the Marsden community, and needs an alcohol licence to be financially viable."

Another wrote: "Drinking at a restaurant is different to have another pub in Marsden."