Ilkeston restaurant calls on community for help

Zee Sheldon outside her old premises
Zee Sheldon outside her old premises
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An Ilkeston eatery is hoping to re-open with a creative business model, asking customers to invest through a crowd-funding initiative.

Patti House, on Bath Street, closed its doors on April 11 after being open less than six months.

Now Zee Sheldon, who opened the burger-joint-with-a-difference, said she would love to move into a larger premises but would prefer not to rely on bank loans and keep investment within the local community.

Zee, 36, from Cotmanhay, hopes to open a new and improved Patti House, leaving behind her previous model as a takeaway and lunch spot, and onto a restaurant for diners to spend more time eating.

Zee said: “I spent all my personal savings to start Patti House and opened it on a shoe string. It transpired that people like the food, they like the place and they love the atmosphere, so they want to stay, so my business plan was flipped on its head, which is brilliant but I don’t have the capacity to seat people.”

But instead of seeking finance through traditional means, Zee hopes to keep it within the community, and so with an interesting take on crowdfunding, she is hoping customers will help fund the expansion.

Zee added: “I don’t feel comfortable asking people for money as a gift, so what we are doing is effectively asking people to purchase a meal in advance. If you pledge £25 I will give you a £25 gift voucher, £100, however much you like.”

She needs to raise £10,000 by May 22 to get the business running again, and all contributors will also be immortalised in the restaurant.

Visit www.crowdfunder.co.uk/patti-house-expansion to help make Patti House a reality.