Cornish fury at Greggs after sausage roll giant confirms it will open new shop in Truro next month – three years after first attempt to crack the county ended in humiliating withdrawal dubbed ‘Greggxit’

  • The popular bakery will open a shop in the Cornish city of Truro next month 
  • Three years ago it withdrew from the country in a moved dubbed ‘Greggxit’
  • It has since returned and is planning on opening its third Cornish branch 
  • The move has sparked fears business could be taken away from local bakeries

A move by Greggs to open a new store in a Cornish city has sparked fury in the county amid fears it could take business away from local bakeries.

The bakery giant, which has more than 2,000 stores across the UK, is opening its new branch in Truro next month nearly three years after its first move into the county ended prematurely. 

However, since then it has opened two stores, and the prospect of a third, this time in the Cornish capital, has raised tensions.

The new branch would be hundreds of metres from Rowe’s and Warrens, which claims to be the oldest producer of Cornish Pasty’s in the world.

Locals have branded the Newcastle-based bakery ‘the Devil’s spawn’, The Telegraph reports, and while some are confident it won’t survive, others aren’t so sure.

Some are concerned that ‘tourists’ will flock to the household name instead of local businesses who have been in the area for decades.

The new Greggs store, pictured here, will open in St Nicholas Street, Truro, on Tuesday, December 6

The new store opens on the site of a former Co-op and Bristol and West building society branch in St Nicholas Street on Tuesday, December 6 – three months behind schedule.

Earlier this week, Greggs refused to reveal to local publication Cornwall Live why its opening had been delayed.

A Greggs spokeswoman would only confirm the store would ‘open sometime this year’.

The chain’s first attempt at penetrating the pasty market was in 2019 when an ill-fated shop next to Carkeel Roundabout at Saltash closed after seven months of trading.

Choosing to remain loyal to their famous Cornish Pasties, locals opted to avoid the bakery chain, bucking the trend compared to the rest of the UK where Greggs has seen huge growth.

Bosses later said the store had been closed following a ‘thorough review’, with locals dubbing the victory ‘Greggxit’. 

However, the chain returned to Cornwall months later in October 2019, by opening an outlet at services on the A30. 

This was followed by a second store on the Penngyllam Industrial Estate on the outskirts of Launceston, which opened in the summer of 2020.

In October 2021, signs started appearing on the site in Truro, a mere stone’s throw from Cornish pasty makers Rowe’s and Warrens. 

There are fears the opening of a Greggs in Truro could have a negative impact on local bakeries (stock image)

Speaking to the Telegraph, David Harris, a local Conservative councillor said it is up to customers who they buy their pasties from. 

‘Cornish pasties are a very local thing,’ he said. ‘If you get a good one it’s beautiful. If you get a cheap and cheerful one it’s yuck…

‘If people don’t buy them they close – it’s as simple as that.’

People on the Truro Our City Facebook Group said they understood that the outlet was struggling to hire staff.

They have also been split on whether they like the idea of a Greggs coming to Truro. 

One commented: ‘All the tourists will go there because it is a brand they know…. here comes the beginning of the end for local bakeries.’

Another said: ‘I don’t think it’ll stay long in Truro hardly no one wants it I had a Greggs sausage roll and I was I’ll as wasn’t cooked through definitely won’t be trying another one.’

Greggs has been contacted for comment. 

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