Closure of traditional greengrocer in Cliftonville amid cost of living crisis

Kate and George of KG Winters

A traditional Cliftonville greengrocer and general store that opened in Cliftonville in 2018 has closed amid the cost of living crisis.

KG Winters on Northdown Road was set up by Kate and George Winteringham, who were passionate about offering seasonal produce to customers.

The couple dealt directly with local farms  and aimed to help customers reduce their household plastics by selling all   fresh food out of plastic wrapping-.

As well as vegetables they stocked local meat products, milk in returnable glass bottles, freshly baked breads and patisseries, snacks, drinks and store cupboard staples and homewares.

The traditional shop front

But sadly economic circumstances mean the couple took the decision to close the doors for a final time this month.

In a post on their social media page they say: “This week, almost exactly four years after we first opened, we closed the doors for the last time at K.G Winters.

“Due the current economic climate that we are living in and following a series of increasingly debilitating challenges over the past two and a half years, the reality of running a small business such as this in these times, has become too much of a challenge for us, and we have had to make the difficult decision to close.

“Four years ago, we opened our doors to the Margate community, with the hope of bringing the incredible produce from around Thanet to our customers.

“We feel privileged to have been able to work with so many fantastic producers, farmers, and makers, and have had a great time meeting all our customers and growing our business along the way.”

Kate and George thanked customers for their support and said they were grateful to have had the experience.

They added: “We would like to take this opportunity to thank all our customers for their kind support, all those who came in to buy some veggies, signed up to our veg boxes, had a turkey delivery, sent a hamper, bought a giant piece of cheese, or joined one of fermentation classes, we thank you from the bottom of our hearts for being part of our adventure.”


    • Unfortunately running a greengrocers shop is no longer a viable business. Supermarkets can sell their produce for less than what the independent traders can buy it for. Fishmongers and butchers have the same problem.

      • It is viable in many other areas – Ramsgate, Broadstairs, Westgate and Birchington (to name but 4) still have thriving greengrocers.

        More shocking for a coastal area is that fishmongers aren’t viable in most places now (too many Brits only eat fish in batter and with chips!).

      • Meanwhile, in Birchington and Westgate greengrocers have sat alongside the supermarkets in the same street for 30 years?

  1. Andrew – Before you comment on pricing think about overheads all of which are rising.
    Rent, business rates, rocketing utility costs staff salaries.
    They tried – did you?

  2. Vegetables are cheap still especially fresh veg it’s all the overheads where the problem lays, hence very rarely see greengrocers and butchers, supermarkets have buying power which is one of the issues they won’t be the last in the current climate at least they gave it every chance possible for it to work,

  3. Will probably be another frothy coffee shop, or a Burger King. Or maybe we can have another ‘art hub’ as there are only 30 or so in Margate.

  4. It is a shame this grocers has closed if only because there are so few in the town. It always struck me as a store that wasn’t really sure of its identity and Customer base and it was quite expensive. I’m not that surprised that it is closing , but wish them all the best as they were always pleasant to customers .

  5. They timed it badly; the march of the DFL merlot-swillers towards Northdown-On-Sea is yet to reach critical mass!

    • Thank goodness for the dfl and the money and improvements in the area. Whenn it was just thanet locals the place remained a dump. We should be gratefull to the dfl

  6. Did any of you shop there. I did. Great friendly team and loved them both. You could pick your own not wrapped in plastic.. Landfil.. Paper bags not plastic.. You could take paper bag back n get refilled. I am sad KG WINTERS. ALL THE BEST. X

  7. Similar shop in Canterbury Road Westbrook had to change direction by ditching the veg. KG Winters delivered to us sometimes during lockdown. Unlike our supermarket deliveries, every item we ordered arrived, every spud and cabbage was fresh.
    The large, dark green-painted food shop further up the road – I think it’s run by Polish people – now has an organic vegetable section and unfortunately for the smaller food shops, it’s pretty good. I mention the green facade because it’s a cool colour, totes 8th-coolest in the world cool. So if anybody else wants to jump on the icy cool bandwagon, just learn the not-so-secret cool codes and off you go.

    • Probably cheaper, possibly not quite as organic … certainly tries hard to hit the cool buttons. Haha, presentation is everything.

  8. Firstly I take my hat off to anyone putting their own money into starting a retail business, it takes a lot of courage and time. I went to the shop a few times, always freindly and great produce. Margate has two major supermarkets which Westgate and Birchington don’t have, so the competition is just not there. Also I am fed up the negative comments about the DFL’s of which I am not one. I would prefer to watch a DFL swigging Merlot in a locally run bar, which employees locals to serve the Merlot, than watch Thanetarians swigging, cheap booze from a can and sitting in our run down and frankly shameful High Street – which has no licencing hours so you can enjoy the experience 24 hours a day often ending like yesterday at about 11.30 in the morning with a Thanetarian falling over drunk outside Poundland

    • Here in Birchington, with its smaller population, there are two Co-Ops and a Sainsburys right near the greengrocers and butchers. I think the biggest difference between here and Margate is that there are a larger percentage of non-driving pensioners, who like visiting a number of smaller shops instead of just one big one. Certainly I do.

      PS. I’m near 60, and I’ve been here since I was 22. So am I a DFL or a Thanetarian? Answers on a saucy postcard!

      • Definitely DFL, otherwise you would know that a native of the isle of Thanet is called a a Thanetian (among other things of course!!)

  9. This is so sad they are a lovely couple , we sorted there drains out for them a while back , they were lovely to deal with such genuine people , they really worked hard and deserved to get on , I’m gutted for them

    • Always sad to see a business close Steve and yes nice people….like many business’s in northdown road though, just a little out of touch.

  10. Tarquin and Olivia in the Thanet hinterlands will be desperately upset now their veg emporium is “doin’ a runner”; shall they learn the beastly and inbred art of removing cling film or have their grocer courier their organics from their old Hampstead village? Oh the woes of indecision!!

  11. There must be a curse on the 8th greatest neighboorhood in the world? Seems an easy out to blame the cost of living crises instead of the fact you charge quadruple the amount for a bunch of bananas than Aldi across the road? Call me Mr Cynical

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