Tell us a bit about your business
The Wells is a pub/restaurant offering the choice of a buzzy relaxed bar downstairs and an elegant quiet restaurant upstairs – with the same priced menu throughout. It is often used by the locals as their “second kitchen” and walkers from the heath are welcomed with their four legged friends who are offered food and drinks as well.
What do you love most about Hampstead? What makes it different to other areas of London?
Hampstead is exceptionally beautiful and rarefied but it still has the feel of a village. I love the architecture, the gardens, the Heath, the blessing of the fresh air, the steep streets and the look of contentment on the faces of the people chivvying their children, walking their dogs or what is more likely, hanging out in cafes eating cakes. All this makes it different to other areas of London.
What were your motivations for starting the business?
My motivation for starting the business was to bring much needed good food to Hampstead and to provide a haven of warmth and friendliness and welcome.
What are your biggest challenges as an independent?
As an independent business costs are inevitably much higher. There are none of the advantages of a shared head office, and central buying, legal fees, and accountancy fees too, are necessarily more expensive.
Besides yourselves, what’s your favourite independent Hampstead business?
The independent business I use the most is Beauty Boutique in Flask Walk. And I go to Livingstone Studios New End Square when I am feeling extravagant.
What could local people be doing more of to help Hampstead traders?
You can find everything you need in Hampstead – food, clothes, presents, flowers, endless cafes. Locals can help traders by staying put and spending their money close to home.