An award-winning curry house has become the first independent restaurant in Northampton to commit to extending the popular ‘Eat Out to Help Out’ offer which is due to come to an end on Monday.
Saffron, in Castilian Street, has pledged to pick up the tab and continue to give diners up to £10 per person off the cost of their meal throughout September and October.
The scheme has proved a hit with curry lovers, with the restaurant fully booked almost every Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday night throughout August.
Restaurant manager Rana Rahman said: “Eat Out to Help Out has been brilliant, it’s done exactly what it set out to achieve, get people back out into the town, eating with their friends and families and spending money in the local economy.
“On Wednesday we sold out four sittings in the restaurant, with almost 140 people eating with us – including lots of families with young children.
“We would love the Government to have a rethink and extend it nationally into September and beyond but, if they don’t, we’re prepared to pick up the tab and keep it running anyway.
“We’ve had to turn people as we simply haven’t been able to find them a table. We don’t want to disappoint people so we’ll be continuing to offer the same deal on the same terms until the end of October.”
The ‘Eat Out to Help Out’ initiative – which has seen diners given up to £10 off per person on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays in August – was aimed at stimulating growth in an industry which has seen revenue nosedive since the COVID-19 outbreak.
Many town centre restaurants have seen a much-needed upturn in business with diners keen to take advantage of the discount and calls are growing for the Government to extend the scheme further.
A number of national chains, including Beefeater and Toby Carvery, have already pledge to continue running the offer and Saffron – which has taken on six new part-time and full-time staff to cope with the extra demand – has now led the way locally.
Executive chef Bodrul Islam said: “It’s been a busy month and we’ve had full restaurants nearly every night. I’ve had to bring in more help in the kitchen.
“It’s been pleasing to see a lot of new faces, as well as our loyal regulars, and the number of families bringing very young children out with them has been great. For many of them it’s their first taste of a curry in a restaurant and they’ve been loving the experience.”
Saffron has undergone a major refit during its enforced closure throughout lockdown and has implemented a range of initiatives to ensure diners can enjoy a meal in a safe and secure environment.
Measures include thermal cameras for temperature checks, the use of tracking software for all employees logging daily temperature readings over a seven-day rolling period, and professional deep cleaning and disinfecting on a daily basis.
The Eat Out to Help Out offer will run on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays until the end of October and diners will receive up to £10 per person off the cost of food and soft drinks. The restaurant is open for takeaways seven days a week, from 4.30pm to 11pm. To book a table at Saffron call 01604 630800.