THE husband and wife behind a popular restaurant say they are here to stay after securing its future.

Late last year The Chilli Pickle in Brighton was forced to go into administration due to difficulties after its second site in Guildford closed.

But owners Dawn and Alun Sperring said the future of the restaurant in Jubilee Street has now been secured and it will remain open. Alun said going into administration “was one of the most difficult things they have had to go through” but had no choice in order to secure the restaurant’s future for the sake of staff, suppliers “and of course all the loyal customers who have grown with us since the beginning”.

He added: “Everything we have been through was to preserve our Brighton restaurant. We couldn’t bear the thought of not having The Chilli Pickle in Brighton. We fought exceptionally hard. We are Dawn and Alun Chilli Pickle, the restaurant is part of our DNA. The Chilli Pickle isn’t going anywhere.”

“We’ve been married for 15 years and we’ve run this place for 12 years so we’re strong at the core. It’s a vocation and a lifestyle for us, not a job.”

The couple said they were blown away by the support from customers.

Dawn said: “When I saw the outpouring of support from people, I thought ‘my God, people really love and believe in us’. There was one point where we gathered all the staff when it looked like things weren’t going well. But everyone was so supportive. They were always giving us hugs.”

The couple said family was a crucial ingredient in their recipe for success – namely sons Stanley, 13, and Fletcher, five.

The Chilli Pickle first opened 12 years ago as a small Indian Bistro in The Lanes. They later moved to a much larger site in Jubilee Street at the myhotel site owned by Andreas Thrasyvoulou.

Alun said: “We fought exceptionally hard and through the support of myhotel founder Andreas Thrasyvoulou, our family and some industry peers we managed to secure the future of The Chilli Pickle Brighton.

“We are so excited about 2020 and what the future holds. We have learnt so much and are so much stronger after all that has happened. I am working on new dishes for the new year and Dawn and I are fully focused on keeping The Chilli Pickle as an integral part of the Brighton dining scene.”