Greggs’ Cornish resurrection sparks consternation from locals

It has long been hostile territory for Greggs, but it seems that the high-street chain is to go once more into the breach of opening up a branch in the home of the Cornish pasty.

Months after the company closed down its one and only branch in the county, a new outlet is expected to be unveiled close to the hamlet of Victoria.

Cue renewed outrage on social media from local people fiercely proud of their county’s most famous culinary export.

“Haven’t they realised we eat a lot better than that down here with hundreds of decent bakeries the length of Cornwall?” said Carole Sebart, an employee at a cafe in Padstow.

Paul Richards, a photographer in Truro, Cornwall, suggested on Facebook: “It might succeed with the tourists. Locals will avoid. So will have to see if it’s financially viable.”

The company, which has more than 1,700 shops across the UK but none in Cornwall, declined to comment but is understood to be months away from a potential opening at a service station on the A30 which has a pizza cafe, as well as branches of Costa Coffee and McDonald’s.

‘I won’t miss Greggs’: Cornwall’s pasty fans prefer the real deal

A spokesperson for the service station, Cornwall Services, said: “We cannot currently confirm who the new tenant will be. We hope to make an announcement very soon.”

Greggs’ previous foothold in Cornwall was within another service station, at Saltash on the very eastern edge of the county, before it beat what some referred to as a hasty “Greggxit”.

Its initial opening in 2018 sparked consternation, with a celebrated veteran pasty maker, Marion Symonds, saying: “I don’t think many Cornish people would ever buy one of their pasties.”

While pasties can only be called Cornish if they include only beef, potato, swede or turnip, onion and seasoning, the current Greggs menu continues to offer what the chain describes as their “take on this delicious West Country classic”, a version containing steak, mince beef with potato and onion.

It adds: “Plus, to give it our own touch we add carrots and peas. Controversial, we know. But we like a few colourful veggies in there.”

But the company faces a daunting task if experience is anything to go by. One independent baker on a previous occasion told the Sun that even his attempts at diversification had ended in failure: “We tried different flavours, like chilli and things like that, but people just want traditional pasties.”

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