Successful applicants

Our town centre and green energy grant schemes have now closed.  The following are some of the projects that have been completed since November 2018.

Solley's Ice Cream, Ripple, Near Deal


New solar panels installed at Solley’s Ice Cream with help from a £10,000 green energy grant mean that the business has enough power to run all of its freezers from the sun.  Solley’s Kentish Ice Cream is the South East’s largest independent producer of real dairy ice cream. The family run business has been making ice cream for over three decades.
85 new panels have been added to Solley’s existing 115 panels, and create enough energy to power the business and sell spare capacity back to the National Grid, halving the business' electricity bill in the process!

Managing Director of Solley’s Kentish Ice Cream, Keith Morrison, said: “The financial help from DDC has made a huge difference to the affordability of the solar technology, and helped us to reduce our business impact upon the environment both now and in the future. We now have Kent’s first Solar powered ice cream, and we owe a huge thank you to the council for their support in making these savings.”

Pop-Up Café, High Street, Deal

Pop Up cafe - cheque presentation 9 November 2021

Cllr Trevor Bartlett, the Leader of Dover District Council presented a café in Deal with a cheque for £10,000 to help with the refurbishment costs of taking on an empty property in the town centre.  The owners of the PopUp Café opened the original café in the summer of 2012 as a temporary venture, but trading went so well they decided to stay, and they now employ 15 members of staff.  They have now expanded into the previously empty premises next door. The shop bakes bread, croissants, cakes and granola bars, and also make soups, salads, sandwiches and toasties, as well as specialty coffees and loose leaf teas.


Quirky Giftz, High Street, Deal

Quirk Giftz cheque presentation 9 November 2021

A £1,000 shopfront grant has been awarded to Quirky Giftz in Deal High Street.  The grant helped towards repainting the outside of the shop plus a smart new sign.  Quirky Giftz have been in Deal High Street for over 10 years and sell a large range of homeware, accessories, perfume and gifts.

Peckish, Worthington St, Dover

Pekish soft opening

A successful rotisserie chicken business from Deal, Peckish, has now opened a new shop in Worthington Street, Dover in October 2021 with help from a £10,000 empty property grant.  The Leader of Dover District Council, Cllr Trevor Bartlett was delighted to 'cut the ribbon' on their opening day.

Action Carpets, Market Square, Dover

Action Carpets photo with Cllr Bartlett

Action carpets moved in to an old Burton's shop in Dover's Market Square in October 2021.  To assist with the complete refurbishment of the property DDC awarded a £10,000 empty property grant. Cllr Trevor Bartlett dropped in to meet Warren Dixon, the business owner who was delighted with his new premises.

Dover Dentures, Castle Street, Dover

Dover Dentures complete

Dover Dentures redecorated their shopfront and added a new sign with help from a £1,000 shopfront grant.

Will and Yates, High Street, Deal

Will and Yates shopfront completed

Will and Yates received £1,000 towards their refurbished, smart new shopfront.

Algar Lodge Farm Shop & Café, Sandwich Road, Deal

 Algar Lodge completed

Owners of the new Algar Lodge Farm Shop & Café on the Sandwich Road have received a green energy grant of £9,900 towards the installation of new solar panels which are now generating electricity to power the business.

Frog and Scott, High Street, Deal

Frog and Scott

With help from a £1,000 shopfront grant the Frog and Scott restaurant in Deal has smart new fabric on its refurbished awnings.  

The Cactus Kiss and Sew Useful, Bench St, Dover

Cactus Kiss and Sew Useful

A new shop in Bench Street, Dover has been opened by two entrepreneurs that both started out in the Co-Innovation centre where they were given the chance to start-up and grow their businesses until they were ready to move into the town centre.  The Cactus Kiss and Sew Useful have together transformed this unloved premises into a beautiful new shop, with help from a £10,000 empty property grant.  Owners Wendy and Melanie officially opened the shop on Saturday 17 April 2021.  Wendy is the owner of Cactus Kiss, a houseplant styling specialist and Melanie from Sew Useful creates hand-made bespoke sewn items including bags and purses.

Arno and Co, High Street, Deal

Arno and Co - after

Arno & Co, a modern grocer selling restaurant quality snacks, meals, wine & foodie gifts in Deal High Street has received a £1,000 shopfront grant to assist with costs for a shopfront refurbishment an awning repairs.

The Riverside Charity Shop (Dover Age Concern)

Riverside Charity Shop

A new charity shop in Biggin Street has been awarded a shopfront grant of £879.  The shop's proceeds will support the Dover Age Concern's Riverside Centre which is a local charity offering a range of services for older people in the Dover area including shopping and meal delivery.  The centre is a place for social interaction and intellectual stimulation where a two course, home cooked hot meal and snacks are available daily plus hair care, chiropody and other services.

Taylor-Jones & Son, High Street, Deal

Taylor Jones

A £1,000 shopfront grant has helped spruce up this contemporary art gallery in Deal High Street.  

Two's Company, High Street, Deal

Twos company

A ladies clothes shop in Deal High Street has received a £1,000 grant to repaint the shopfront. 

Margherita’s, King Street, Deal



A Mediterranean-style restaurant/deli has opened its doors to Deal residents and visitors with help from a £10,000 business grant.

The fully licenced business serves Italian and Mediterranean cuisine and has a wide range of plant-based and healthy eating options. Margherita’s will serve hand crafted pizzas, traditional Italian hot food, Deli and Italian gelato ice-cream for ‘dine in’, ‘take-away’ and evening home delivery.

The grant contributed towards refurbishment of the dilapidated windows and facia structures, internal renovation, flooring and lighting, turning an empty shell into a fully compliant commercial premises.  The premises also benefitted from Kent's No Use Empty loan scheme which is available for both residential and commercial properties.

Ivy Rose, Castle Street, Dover

Ivy Rose


A new wedding shop opened in Castle Street, Dover in January 2020.  Owners Amy and Kerrie were delighted to receive the grant  and are looking forward to helping their customers get everything they need for their big day.

Blakes, Castle Street, Dover



Bar and restaurant, Blakes in Dover received a £1,000 grant towards a shop front refurbishment which included a new window and a fresh, smart new coat of paint.

Barkened, Deal High Street

Emma and Rob Jan 2020


Barkened opened in December 2019 and is a lifestyle shop that designs and handcrafts their own goods and supports other independent makers, selling 'thoughtful' products that are focussed around people, dogs and homes.

Barkened received a grant of £10,000 which helped the owners Emma and Rob to carry out a complete renovation and restoration of a beautiful heritage building in the conservation area of Deal, ensuring it stands for many years to come retaining its character as a shop with living accommodation.

Rhino and Bull's, King Street, Dover

Rhino and Bulls outside


A beautiful old building in King St, Dover has been refurbished to become a smart new bar, Rhino & Bull’s, with help from a £10,000 Town Centre Business Grant. Owner, Carl Ambrose, said: “It’s a fabulous old building and thanks to the grant from DDC we’ve worked hard to create something special with the interior which provides a warm welcome whether you’re looking for a morning coffee or an evening cocktail.”

Collection, Sandwich



A ladies clothes shop in Sandwich town centre has received £1,000 towards repairs to the exterior of the building. Pictured above is Carolyn Grillsley from Collection.

The Old Pharmacy, King St, Sandwich

The Old Pharmacy storfront

A new café/bar in Sandwich was awarded a grant of £10,000 to help with renovation costs. The café/bar serves a range of locally sourced produce. 

Andrew from The Old Pharmacy said: “We’d like to thank DDC for the grant which helped make this possible. After a lot of hard work and fun we are excited to finally open and look forward to being part of the Sandwich hospitality scene.” 

Hope and Lane, High St, Deal

Hope and lane storefront

Hope and Lane in Deal received £1,000 towards renovation works.  The front and side of the café was is in poor repair and needed work to remedy rot and general deterioration. The property was also repainted externally and  a smart new sign was installed. 

Dickens Corner, Market Square, Dover

Market Square Kitchen


New bakery and café, The Market Square Kitchen, now trades from the refurbished Dickens Corner in Dover’s Market Square.  We awarded £10,000 towards the refurbishment of the Tudor style property which is one of the most prominent buildings in the Market Square.  The building has a long history as a bakery and is mentioned in Charles Dickens’ novel, David Copperfield, from the author’s visits to the town.

59 Biggin Street, Dover

Hamdy Shahein

Hamdy Shahein was awarded a £10,000 grant to help refurbish the ground floor and shopfront of his property at 59 Biggin Street, Dover, which had been empty for over a year.  Hamdy has installed a new shopfront which includes new doorway leading to the upper floors which he converted into a new flat.  The shop has been leased to a recruitment company.

Elephant and Hind, Market Square, Dover

Harry Richardson outside the Elephant and Hind

The Elephant and Hind opened July 2019 with help from a grant of £10,000 to help with refurbishment costs. 

Harry Richardson from the Elephant and Hind said : “We are delighted to be reopening the Elephant and Hind and aim to provide the Market Square and the local community with a relaxed and welcoming community venue.  We will be serving pastries and coffee in the mornings plus fresh pizzas throughout the day and evening, made with sour dough from the bakery that will shortly be opening across the square in Dickens Corner.   We are a dog friendly establishment and will be providing a variety of entertainment including live music and quizzes.  We would like to thank Dover District Council for their help and support during these renovations and are excited to be part of the regeneration of this wonderful town.”

Gamebase, Unit 3a 11-16 Biggin Street, Dover

Gamebase interior

When Game decided not to renew the lease on its Biggin Street store in Dover, former employee, James Pearce, seized the opportunity and  has now opened his own digital gaming business, Gamebase.

As well as selling computer and digital games, James has redeveloped the store to include a gaming arena, where gamers can play their favourite new and classic games.  The venue offers competitions and parties with refreshments also on sale. 

James Pearce said: “We’re delighted to bring something different to Dover in what is a combined game store and gaming arena for all ages.  We strive to create a new social environment with pay-per-play, birthday parties, private hire, competitions and league events.  It’s something different in the town centre to help its wider regeneration.”

Lava Lounge, 31 Biggin Street, Dover

Ben Dowle outside the lava lounge

Lava Lounge was awarded a grant of £10,000 from DDC to help with refurbishment costs, and opened in May 2019.

Ben Dowle from the Lava Lounge said: “We would like to thank Dover District Council for helping us to bring Lava Lounge to Dover’s Town Centre.  The grant money has been put towards the refurbishment costs and we are very excited to be opening for the people of Dover to enjoy.”

Europa Fish & Chips, 9 Bench St, Dover

Europa fish and chips storefront

Europa Fish and Chips on Bench Street, Dover, was awarded a grant of £1,000 for rendering, painting and new signage.

Urban Calm, 6 Bench Street, Dover

Urban Calm official opening


Our first town centre business grant of £8.5k was awarded to sisters Sacha and Leanne Eastwell who have opened a new beauty salon, named Urban Calm, in Bench Street, Dover.  

Sacha and Leanne chose the premises in Bench Street due to it's proximity to the nearby St James’ retail and leisure development.

Sacha Eastwell said: “Receiving the grant has allowed us to refurbish the new salon, enabling us to create more beauty facilities available for local beauticians or apprentices to come and join our team.  We feel the contribution has given us a much better chance of not only growing our own businesses, but helping to create a professional work space for others, and we are very grateful for the grant funding, which has contributed towards our new venture.”

Joanne Harmer Gallery, 134 High Street, Deal

Joanne Harmer gallery exterior

The Joanne Harmer Art Gallery has been given a new splash of colour after being awarded a grant of £1,000 for external repairs, repainting and redecoration.

Brunch, 22 Biggin Street, Dover

Brunch storefront

An independent cafe in Dover was awarded a grant of £1,000 for a shop frontage refurbishment and roof repairs. 

Dan and Ellen from Brunch said: “We are very pleased to have been awarded this grant, and would like to say a big thank you to Dover District Council. This will help us to provide further renovations, and we look forward to continuing to provide a high level of service in a warm and welcoming atmosphere in the town.” 


Find out more about the scheme and apply »