An American-style coffee shop has opened in Trowbridge, with a unique history which links the county town with New York.
Gavin Jones, the group manager responsible for the new Fifth Avenue cafe at The Gateway shopping centre on Bythesea Road, is the fifth descendant of Catherine Lucy, the woman who founded their family retail business in 1911. It still runs the Jones’ convenience store in Studley Green as well as two other stores in Melksham and one in Bradford on Avon.
Catherine Lucy’s son Basil Jones was the stained glass artist who created some of the windows at Holy Trinity Church in Trowbridge, and Mr Jones’ great-grandfather.
When Mr Jones was trying to decide what to call the new business he discovered that his ancestor had also created stained glass for the windows of St Patrick’s Cathedral on Fifth Avenue, New York.
The 27-year-old said: “Since I am the fifth generation since Catherine Lucy we were looking for a name linked to the number five and when we discovered the connection with Fifth Avenue it just seemed perfect.
“It is 100 years since the family business was founded and we have come full circle in that time. Trowbridge seemed like the ideal location to set up our first coffee shop, and all being well we want to open up our second shop in Bath in a few months time.”
Mr Jones’ uncle Chris Jones used to run the Fosseway Produce Store in Trowbridge in the 1960s.
Fifth Avenue, which employs seven people, is open seven days a week and bosses hope to attract passing trade and travellers using nearby Trowbridge railway station.
Shop manager Myles Bond, 21, said: “It is going really well. We have had a nice response from everyone. It is good for Trowbridge because we have created jobs and we have brought a coffee shop into the heart of town.”
Mr Jones added: “We have free wi-fi in the cafe and it is helping to attract a lot of business people who are holding meetings here, as well as a lot of students who want to do work on their laptop.
“We think it will offer something really different for Trowbridge and will hopefully help to attract other businesses to The Gateway so the empty premises can be filled.”