Heather Mills to open new café branch in central Brighton

5:10pm Thursday 7th February 2013

By Tim Ridgway

Heather Mills looks set to open the second branch of her vegan café in Brighton.

The former model opened the first VBites venue in the former Big Fish Café at Hove Lagoon in July 2009.

Despite the park café not opening in the winter and receiving mixed reviews, it appears Paul McCartney’s former wife wants to spread her wings and expand her fledgling business in Brighton and Hove.

A licence has been issued for VBites to trade in the former Aloka spa and café store in East Street, Brighton.

This means, once refurbishment is complete, the café could freely operate.

According to information presented to Brighton and Hove City Council, the second floor will be converted into a place for live music and educational films.

The restaurant will be restricted to the ground and first floors.

In the Hove Lagoon café, meals range from meat substitute burgers and New York-style hotdogs to Mrs Swirly dairy-free soft scoop ice-creams.

Love affair

Many dishes feature meat substitutes made from plant-based ingredients from Redwood, Ms Mills’ food company.

Within a month, it was claimed between 700 and 1,000 vegan products were being sold at the cafe every day.

When launching her café, Ms Mills said: “I’ve always had a love affair with food, ever since I began cooking when I was nine.”

Aloka spa and café closed suddenly in September when a notice was put up in its window.

Mike Booth, chairman of parent company Aura Soma Products, said he was planning to open a new spa in the city but he was tight-lipped on where it will be and when it will open.

Transferred

Brighton and Hove City Council confirmed that the licence has now been transferred.

There are no restrictions on the opening time. However, recorded music can only be performed from 8am to midnight.

Alcohol can only be sold from midday to midnight, Monday to Saturday.

These are both restricted to 11.30pm on Sunday.

Ms Mills was unavailable to comment at the time of The Argus going to print.

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