Fife cafe among top 20 family businesses in the UK

A Fife business has been named in the top 20 family businesses in the UK.

By Fiona Dobie
Thursday, 23rd June 2022, 12:00 pm
Ricky Barclay with wife Marzena in the garden at the back of Merchant's House. Pic: Fife Photo Agency.
Ricky Barclay with wife Marzena in the garden at the back of Merchant's House. Pic: Fife Photo Agency.

Merchants House Cafe in Kirkcaldy is one of just three Scottish businesses to appear on the list created by local shopping platform ShopAppy.

From March to June thousands of nominations came in for small, family-run shops, bars and cafes around the UK through ShopAppy.

Glasgow-based gift and jewellery shop Bonnie Wee Designs and Stewarton-based independent book shop The Book Nook were also included in the top 20.

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All three were repeatedly praised by customers for their excellent service, personal staff, value for money and role in the community during and after the pandemic.

They are now in with a chance of being named ShopAppy Favourite Family Business of the Year 2022, which will be announced on Monday, June 27.

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Dr Jackie Mulligan, expert on the Government’s High Streets Task Force and founder of ShopAppy, said: “We received thousands of nominations for family-run businesses around the UK and each one of them should be applauded for the value they bring to their local communities.

"Those that made our top 20 received outstanding nominations and endless praise from their customers.

"Merchants House Cafe, Bonnie Wee Designs and The Book Nook are clearly a massive hit with people in their local communities and everyone who works at them deserves to be congratulated."

Merchants House Cafe opened its doors in the east end of Kirkcaldy High Street in October 2020.

Ricky Barclay and his wife Marzena admit it was a huge risk to open the new business in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, but they say the gamble has paid off.

Ricky said: “We’re thrilled to have been named one of the UK’s top 20 family businesses.

"It’s been a challenging couple of years with the pandemic but, thanks to our regular customers, we’ve been able to see it out.”

It was a dream come true for Marzena when she opened her own coffee shop – something she had wanted for 20 years.

The cafe is in one of the shop units within the 16th century A-listed Merchant’s House in Laws Close.