Horsebox pizza parlour bounces back from blaze

March 01 2021
Horsebox pizza parlour bounces back from blaze

A NEW Thornbury venture selling takeaway food from a horsebox has thanked the community for their backing after a fire derailed their opening.

The House Box, owned by James Murray, who also owns Hawkes House Café and Bar in St Mary Street, had to be party rebuilt after a fire started in the pizza oven in the early hours of January 14.

Although firefighters from the town's fire station quickly put out the blaze, it destroyed the oven and wrecked some of the structure (below), which had to be partly rebuilt.

The new venture was set up to bring in an income while the café and bar is closed during lockdown.

After having to delay launching his venture by two weeks, James decided to hold a ‘flash opening’, giving just two hours’ notice to customers on his email list. They sold out of food in just 90 minutes.

James said: "Since then we have had three bumper weekends. We've tripled the size of our sour dough 'mother' so we can now prep enough pizza to last us right through to 8pm on a Friday and Saturday night.

"The daytimes have been great too."

A total of 45 people are employed at Hawkes House, and the horsebox business was set up in the hope of protecting their jobs.

It will eventually complement Hawkes House by providing food at functions.

James said: “It's certainly been the most challenging year of our business lives, the pandemic has hit so many people in different ways.”

Thornbury is such a great little town, the community really pulls together through adversity and this has been no exception.”