Friends Alison Johnston and Sarah Reed were devastated when their favourite coffee shop closed down earlier this year. It was a place where they would regularly meet up during lockdown and became an important part of their lives.
With Alison’s background in retail and Sarah having worked in hospitality, the pair combined their skills and took the decision to open their own café at the spot, ensuring the venue remained as a hub for the community.
Alderman Ross, along with Economy Minister Gordon Lyons, East Antrim MP Sammy Wilson and South Antrim MLA Pam Cameron, visited Ten Coffee in Monkstown village centre for the official opening event on Friday (October 14).
Alderman Ross said:
“It is truly inspirational what Alison and Sarah have done here. Despite the current cost of living crisis and the difficulties faced by businesses across the borough, these two friends have persevered and created a place where local people can come together for a cuppa and a catch up.
“Meeting places such as Ten Coffee are vital to the health and wellbeing of the community. I wish Alison and Sarah every success as they continue on their journey.”
Mr Lyons added:
“I was delighted to attend the official opening of Ten Coffee. In getting the coffee shop off the ground, Sarah and Alison are showing the resilience and entrepreneurial spirit that abounds throughout the hospitality and small business sectors across Northern Ireland. Indeed they are an inspiration to others who may be considering taking the plunge and starting their own business.
“Venues like Ten Coffee also play an important role in the local community in providing a vibrant and friendly meeting place, particularly as we head into the winter months. I commend Alison and Sarah, and give them my very best wishes for the future prosperity of the business.”
Speaking at the official opening event, co-owner Sarah said: “Alison and I are so thankful for the support we have received and we are glad to see the community spirit back in Monkstown.”