A Shoreham restauranteur has described closing his popular Indian eatery after 25 years as the ‘end of an era’.
Millan Tandoori in Upper Shoreham Road closed last Monday after trading in Shoreham for a quarter of a decade.
Abdul Mohit Noor, known by all his customers as Mo, opened the restaurant when he was just 19 years old.
He said: “I wanted to thank all of my customers, who have become close friends over the years.
“Meeting different people from so many walks of life and watching people grow up in the community – that’s what I’m going to miss the most.”
Since announcing the closure, he said the response from the community had been ‘overwhelming’.
“The comments have been really lovely,” he said.
Mo said he made the decision to close the business for several reasons, including difficulties finding staff.
“Over the past couple of years, the Indian catering sector has struggled to recruit staff. This is happening across the country,” he said.
He said this was mostly due to immigration policies and working restrictions on students coming to the country from overseas, but said he had also struggled to recruit people locally.
He added that his was the last generation who wanted to work in the industry and said: “My children don’t want to work in this trade, they don’t want this kind of career.”
The 44-year-old, of Sullington Way, said closing the doors on Monday was ‘quite emotional’, but that he was already on the lookout for new premises in Southwick or Shoreham from which to run a takeway business, which he hopes will trade under the same name. The Upper Shoreham Road building is now set to become a new restaurant. Mo said: “I wish them well with it.”
Slate restaurant, which is set to open in October, will serve a mixed cuisine including steaks, seafood and Mediterrenean food.
Saeed Bizaki, a chef of 25 years who is opening the restaurant with his brother, said he was keen to ensure the menu had something for everyone.
“My main priority is to make it a family place which is child friendly,” he said.
All food will be fresh and homemade, he added, with options for vegeterians and gluten free diners.