'My spirit is broken' - Bristol shop owner fears he will be left homeless as costs rise

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A cafe owner says rising energy costs could force him to close his business and leave him living on the streets.

A crowdfunding appeal has raised five thousand pounds to help keep the shop open in the short-term.

However owner Mike Cook says closure is inevitable as he will soon be unable to keep up with the rising costs of running his cafe in Bedminster which could leave him homeless as well as jobless.

Hennesseys coffee shop has been running for 15 years and is a core part of the local community.

Mr Cook has also been donating leftover food to charitable causes for almost as long as the coffee shop has been in business.

Mr Cook said: "People are absolutely terrified, I've had people in here crying and that starts me off because we don't all do it for the money, we will have frugal lives because what we get out of it is community, because communities aren't out there anymore."

Mike prides himself on keeping his menu prices low, to ensure food and hot drinks are accessible to members of the community on low incomes.

The coffee shop has been a labour of love for its customers and the local community.

Rising costs of energy and supplies are leaving his bank account close to empty. Mr Cook says he pays himself just 75 pence per hour.

He said: "I will be homeless, I will be living on the street, if it went, it would break my heart. My spirit is broken as it is."

Locals donated £5,000 just to keep the doors open but it is a temporary delay from the closure.

Lucy Rees at Toyville Credit: ITV West Country

At nearby Toyville, growing costs are being absorbed to keep the customers coming.

Assistant manager Lucy Rees said: "Coming up to our busiest times of the year with Christmas, so it is a bit concerning whether people are going to be shopping as much, spending as much money.

"I've seen it with people buying birthday presents, the budget has gone down a bit."

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