Family venture Bar 7 set to open its doors in Margate High Street

Karl Knight and mum Wendy are preparing to open Bar 7 on Friday

A family run venture aimed at bringing together the community will open in Margate High Street this Friday [December 22].

The former Silvers venue is being redecorated and redesigned to transform it into Bar 7 and will include a bistro, bar and Knight’s Studios and hire space.

The business is being headed up by Wendy Knight and son Karl with husband Douglas and daughter Shelby also pitching in.

Former retail and childcare worker Wendy, 46, said: “I’m a firm believer in home-cooked food and there will be concessions for OAPs and SEN {special educational needs] discos and events.

“My daughter Shelby, who does a lot of performing around Thanet, has ADHD and autism so we know how difficult it can be to go to restaurants and eat and drink and not feel you are being a nuisance so we will be having lots of special [SEN] events.

“We have Santa here for our opening day and that will be a free event, with my husband dressing as Santa, so we can give something back for the kids. It will be a free visit and a free gift.”

Wendy and Douglas, who is a training and development manager, returned to Thanet from Saudi Arabia in October after a 15 month work contract and decided to resume their search for a business premises.

Wendy said: “We always said that once all the kids were adults, which they now are, we would do something.

“We had been talking about it and looking for a while and then it all changed when we went to Saudi. When we came back I didn’t want to go back to retail or childcare and knew it was the time to go into hospitality.

“My husband always said we would open a B&B or emigrate but I like the sun and he likes the snow so that was never going to happen!”

Karl will be the face of the bar and events. The 23-year-old has six years experience working in hospitality in pubs, independent bars and social clubs. He only found out about the family’s Bar 7 venture when Wendy persuaded him to accompany her to the agents where she signed the papers. The mum-of-five said: “I then told him ‘here’s the bar you always wanted – Merry Christmas!”

Karl has already planned events for Valentines and St Patrick’s Day and Easter and says there is a lot more in the pipeline.

He will also be taking on the kitchen with a friend expected to join him to help run the 40 cover bistro.

He said: “I want to start Thirsty Thursdays to bring things back to Margate. Once we start doing it hopefully other bars will too and we can bring night life to Margate, nice, civilised night life. We want Margate to be an area people come to again.”

The bar will be open every Thursday to Saturday,  7pm-1am.

From January 8 people will also be able to get coffee and snacks from 9am with the bistro then opening for meals between noon and 4pm.

The venue also has downstairs Knight’s Studios and hire space. Dance schools Silver Slipper and Treble Performing Arts -where Shelby ,21, is a student teacher -are renting it Monday-Thursday from 4pm-9pm, but there is availability Friday to Sunday and during the day.

Karl said: “It can be used for parties and events which is our big thing we will focus on next year.”

Bar 7 opens this Friday (December 22) with the Santa meet and greet from 3pm to 5pm. The venue will then reopen with the bar at 7pm-1am.

Find Bar 7 at 59 High Street Margate and on facebook here

Bar 7 will not be open New Year’s Eve due to a prior commitment


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