Appleby family run Lily’s Cafe reflects on journey to success

A COUPLE who switched careers to run a successful Appleby cafe has announced plans for new ventures.

Owners of Lilly’s Cafe, Connor and Abi Ruehorn-Hyde bought the business in April and opened in June.

Despite some initial difficulties presented to them during the lockdown, the couple were able to come through and build a successful business around the restrictions.

They have recently announced the development of ‘Lilly’s Library Book Club’ which will begin running next month.

Connor said: “Buying a business in lockdown was fairly easy, but making it work took some work.

“We were a bit nervous to start with as people couldn’t eat in doors at the time, and restrictions were tight.

“But since then, it’s gone really well and we’ve had tourists coming in all through the summer.

“It’s gone well with the horse fairs we saw and we’ve built a steady number of regulars from the local community.

“A lot of them have been really supportive of us throughout this.

“I was farming full time until Christmas but then I had an operation of my shoulder in January.

“The time I spent in recovery as well as lockdown gave me time to think about the future.

“I thought it could be time for a change.

“We were working 60 to 70 hours a week and we have our little girl.

“When we saw Lilly’s Cafe it presented us with a really good opportunity to work together as a family.

“We could be home sooner and see more of our little girl.

“She is coming up to two years old now and she is our whole world.

“Since we reopened, we’ve totally remodelled the place and redecorated it from front to back.

“We also got the idea for a book club.

“It was my wife’s brain child and it will be every month.

“It starts on October 7 and will be on the first Thursday of every month.

“We are also thinking of doing a special Christmas dinner which would be nice.

“I’ve worked in hospitality before and at a chip shop, while my wife has worked at Westmorland Services before.

“We’ve done some catering and hospitality before we thought why not grab this opportunity and go for it. If we didn’t, we may not get another chance.

“A lot of people in lockdown did what we did, as they had so much time to consider their futures. We are excited to see where this can lead us.”

The Westmorland Gazette | News