December 9 2013 Latest news:
Melissa York, Reporter
Tuesday, August 20, 2013
The owners of a hairdressers lost their court battle against Newham Council last Friday forcing them to close their business after 50 years.
Capri Hair Fashions opened on Canning Town’s Rathbone Market site on July 13 1963 but they were relocated to a run down premises on Barking Road in 2010 as the shop was cleared by developers to begin a £3.7bn regeneration project.
Giuseppe and Marion Tomei met council officers in court to appeal eviction plans following a payment dispute over the cost of refurbishment.
A spokesperson for Newham Council said it was “delighted” with the court verdict - awarding legal costs as well as repossession - and they branded the process an “unfortunate” way to spend taxpayers’ money.
Marion Tomei, Giuseppe’s wife, said they felt like “lambs to the slaughter” during the hearing at Bow County Court on August 15.
She added: “I’m just absolutely gutted for the staff, really. Four of them have lost their jobs and they shouldn’t be the ones punished by this.
“I feel absolutely devastated.
“We have been made out to be these money-grabbing parasites and we are not.
“They’re just going to come in now and take everything we worked for and a nice little opportunity will open up for someone else and they’ll just move in in our place.”
She added that she would like to thank customers and friends who supported them by signing the Help Save Capri petition.
A Newham Council spokesperson said: “It is unfortunate that we have had to spend taxpayers’ valuable money on pursuing the repossession of the Capri Hairdressers property occupied by the Tomeis. We are delighted by the latest ruling and the fact that the court awarded us legal costs.
“We bent over backwards to help the Tomeis but they chose to challenge us through the courts at every opportunity, despite our generous offers of compensation, writing off almost a decade of rent arrears and paying towards the costs of refurbishing their current premises.
“The Tomeis have now left the shop and handed back the keys. The continuing redevelopment of Rathbone Market is not only transforming the town centre, but it will significantly boost trade for existing shopkeepers.”