Halifax Monte Carlo cafe owner calls time after 24 years

Kostakis Lambrou at Monte Carlo Cafe, Halifax, selling up after 24 years in the business
Kostakis Lambrou at Monte Carlo Cafe, Halifax, selling up after 24 years in the business

The owner of the Monte Carlo Cafe in Halifax town centre says the time is right to hang up his apron after 24 years.

Kostakis Lambrou, 69, has lived in Huddersfield since 1965 and took over the business from his brother, who had run it for 16 years.

READ MORE: Halifax town centre cafe is up for sale and has development potential
Before then, Mr Lambrou was an engineer for the former Standard Fireworks company for 25 years.

“I could see Standard Fireworks was going down hill, they were making people redundant, so I thought ‘this is my chance to get into a cafe’,” he said.

“I’d done that before I went to Standard Fireworks, I worked in a cafe in Halifax next to the old Wimpy Bar, called Olympus.

“I also ran Pearson’s fish shop on Union Street for 18 months”

Mr Lambrou says says he is ready to move on but has enjoyed his time at the cafe.

“I’ve only just put it up for sale. I hope it’s going next week but I don’t know,” he said.

“I decided I would like to go when I’m 70, which is next year.

“I don’t know what I’ll do with myself. I don’t have any plans for the future.

“I work seven days a week. I only get Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day off, that’s my lot.

“In a way, I’m ready. I should have gone before but my daughters are pushing me this time so I’ve given in.

“The time comes when you have to retire. It’s sad in a way but nothing goes on forever.

“I’ve seen a lot of changes. There have been good times, recently it’s gone a bit quieter in the last five years.

“But on the whole it’s been alright and I have some good memories.

“I’ve enjoyed it. I’ve always been pleased to serve the customers and make them welcome.

“I’ve known our regular customers for a long time, they’ve been coming here for a lot longer than I have.

“Some are sad to hear I’m coming to an end but I’m afraid everything has to eventually.”

When asked what has been the most popular dish on the menu over the years, Mr Lambrou said: “The homemade pies, which I still do. A lot of people come in for that homemade, traditional English food, and roasts.

“We cook everything on the premises. Which has been the main reason why we’ve kept going. But customer numbers are getting less and I’m afraid it’s my time to go.”