Future of Cellar hangs in the balance as souvenir shop moves in

Image Credit: Basher Eyre (CC BY-SA 2.0)

A new souvenir shop has moved into Oxford in a location previously being looked at by Cellar as an alternative venue.

It emerged in June that Cellar was at threat of closure due to not following fire regulations.

This came following an inspection by county council inspectors, where Cellar was told to cut its capacity from 150 to 60 because its fire exits, at 70cm wide, were too narrow.

The location of the new souvenir shop, in Cornmarket Street, is one of several options which was previously being explored by the owner of Cellar, Tim Hopkins.

The souvenir shop Oxford Connect, which is a pop-up shop, will stay until the end of September. The company which owns the shop also owns two other souvenir shops in Cornmarket, The Oxford Gift Shop and The Oxford Souvenir Shop. These opened in the last 3 years, and both have 10 year leases.

Graham Jones, a member of the traders’ group ROX – Backing Oxford Businesses, told The Oxford Mail that there have been complaints about the number of souvenir shops in Cornmarket, before adding that there is still the possibility for Cellar to occupy this space in Cornmarket after the lease expires in September.