Driffield News

Costello’s confirms its Driffield bakery shop will not re-open

The owners of Costello’s Bakery have confirmed its Driffield shop will not be re-opening, and its outlets in Malton and Wetherby will also be closing.

“The costs involved in running the shops is now too high to continue,” said James and Louise Costello, but their online business will be carrying on.

The Driffield shop, in Market Place, closed in May, when staff shortages due to sickness and holidays were said to be the reasons behind a temporary closure.

Our energy bill is now more than our rents combined and that is an awful lot of coffee and cake to try and sell to make ends meet.

But it did not re-open its doors and in a statement on Facebook this weekend, the owners said they wanted to explain their decisions.

The post said: “We have been in this business a long time, coming up 24 years this year but we can honestly say this year has been the most challenging to date (yes, even beating pandemics and lockdowns!) and to be fully transparent with you all, we can’t see it getting any better for the high street any time soon.

“Like many other businesses, we are facing the impossible situation of increasing energy bills, staff shortages, and supplier costs increasing by a minimum of 25 per cent.

“Taking the business as a whole, our electricity bill has gone from £19.5k/year to £105k/year – yes, you read that right – an increase of over £8,750 a month!

“We’re honestly not exaggerating, I wish we were.

“We just can’t afford that and we don’t have a solution. We’re a small business and we just don’t operate with that amount of spare cash flow.

“Our energy bill is now more than our rents combined and that is an awful lot of coffee and cake to try and sell to make ends meet.

“Some big decisions and changes have needed to be made.

“At the beginning of May, we took the difficult decision, after 23 years, to close the door of our Driffield shop as we just couldn’t find a way to viably stay open with the increasing costs.

“In April this year, our Malton shop came to the end of its seven-year lease and with a proposed rent increase from the landlords as well as staff shortages we were already experiencing, the wisest business decision for us was to bow out and close in Malton as well.

“On Wednesday last week we made the decision to close the last of our high street shops and closed the door in Wetherby too.

“There is a clear pattern here – as each shop has fallen out of their existing energy contracts, they have each incurred such high rises that we simply can’t viably keep them operational.

“We don’t want to get all X Factor sob story on you, it’s certainly not all doom and gloom. We saw difficult times during lockdown, when all of our shops closed and we got through it and we are determined to fight and work as hard as we possibly can to get through this as well.

“Costello’s may no longer be on the high street but the same Costello’s that you know and love is still right here in your hand/pocket/laptop and we’re absolutely going to continue doing what we do and offering our treats to you through our website.

“Many of you already shop with us online and we hope that you folks local to Driffield, Malton and Wetherby will continue to support us and allow us to deliver our goodies to you rather than you coming to us!”

The company’s headquarters at Sutton-on-the-Forest near York will remain open.

James Costello opened his first shop, the Driffield branch, in 1999 at the age of 21 with an aim to promote local produce from local producers.

Over the next two decades, he opened six more stores throughout North, East and West Yorkshire.

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