Mr Chips in Aswell Street, Louth, will serve its last portion of award-winning fish and chips later this month as it prepares to close its doors for the last time.
Owner John Hagan - the third generation of the Hagan family to run the restaurant since his grandfather Daniel bought it almost 100 years ago - confirmed that the business will close at 3pm on Friday December 18, resulting in the loss of four full time and 11 part time jobs.
Mr Hagan, 52, told the Leader that he has accepted an offer for the property as one of his knees needs replacing and the other knee requires surgery, which had left him in agony over the last 18 months.
Mr Hagan added that the deal he secured was in the best interests of his staff members as he will be able to give them redundancy packages. He had previously received two leasehold offers which would have kept the restaurant open, but this would have also risked staff members facing replacement, pay cuts, or being put onto temporary contacts with no redundancy pay at the end of it.
Mr Hagan said: “Some of our staff have been here for many years and it didn’t seem fair for them to be put on temporary contacts, so we dismissed that.
“The deal I have accepted leaves money on the table for us to give our staff redundancy pay.
“It was very emotional when I told the staff yesterday. We have looked after the staff the best we can and I hope they all appreciate the situation, but people are human of course. There was emotion all round, from the point of view that we were closing the restaurant after all these years.”
Mr Hagan added: “It’s not what I wanted to do, but I can’t walk around now and I’ve got to think of my health - you only get one chance with your health.
“I’ve worked here for 38 years and owned the restaurant since 1990, but during the last 18 months I often couldn’t walk at all. I’m going to have my knee surgery before Christmas, and getting healthy is my goal.
“It’s a sad time, but everything comes to an end, even after all these years. If it wasn’t for my health, then who knows, but it is what it is.”
Mr Hagan did not disclose who had purchased the building.
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