First look inside: New deli and surf shop open on coast

Fig and Olive store and deli has joined forces with East Coast Surf and opened a new combined store

Fig and Olive store and deli has joined forces with East Coast Surf and opened a new combined store in Cromer. Pictured are Rachel Parkin and Mark Southgate. - Credit: Sonya Duncan

Everything from cereals to surfboards has gone on sale inside the former K Hardware store in Cromer. 

Two businesses - the deli Fig and Olive and the surf shop East Coast Surf, have both opened inside the building, opposite the town's parish church. 

Rachel Parkin is running the deli, while Mark Southgate is running the surf shop.

Ms Parkin, who worked in local government for 19 years, said she decided she wanted to do something new during the lockdowns, and saw an opportunity for a new deli in Cromer following the closure of the Norfolk Food and Drink Company in Tucker Street.

She said: "I've tried to source products that you can't buy so much in the supermarkets - locally produced cheeses from Norfolk and Suffolk and a small selection of freshly baked goods from the Beach House Kitchen in Overstrand. We have local spirits, beer and ale, including beer from The Gangway in Cromer.

Fig and Olive store and deli has joined forces with East Coast Surf and opened a new combined store

Inside Fig and Olive in Cromer. - Credit: Sonya Duncan

Fig and Olive store and deli has joined forces with East Coast Surf and opened a new combined store

Rachel Parkin with the produce at Fig and Olive. - Credit: Sonya Duncan

"We also have a refill station where people can use their own packaging, for food cupboard goods like pasta, nuts, pulses and cereals. 

"We've had a really positive reaction so far - people have been saying that this is what Cromer needs and they like the look."

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Mr Southgate, who used to run a surf shop in Norwich, said there was a growing interest in surfing off the coast, with Cromer, East Runton and Sea Palling being the most popular spots to catch a wave. 

He said: "Surfing has been really popular in Norfolk since the late 60s. It tailed off a bit but it's had a resurgence in the last three or four years, and it's definitely becoming more popular. 

Fig and Olive store and deli has joined forces with East Coast Surf and opened a new combined store

Mark Southgate of East Coast Surf inside his new store. - Credit: Sonya Duncan

"It's going really well - all the shop owners know each other in Cromer and we all try to help each other."

Mr Southgate said as well as surfboards, he sold a range of equipment, wetsuits and merchandise. 

Ms Parkin said the two different businesses complemented each other well - and it was a combination that was also found in other popular seaside towns in Cornwall and Australia. 

"There's a really nice feel about the shop," she added. 

Fig and Olive store and deli has joined forces with East Coast Surf and opened a new combined store

Some of the items on sale at East Coast Surf. - Credit: Sonya Duncan

Fig and Olive store and deli has joined forces with East Coast Surf and opened a new combined store

Cheeses on sale at Fig and Olive in Cromer. - Credit: Sonya Duncan

Fig and Olive store and deli has joined forces with East Coast Surf and opened a new combined store

Fig and Olive store and deli has joined forces with East Coast Surf and opened a new combined store in Cromer. - Credit: Sonya Duncan

Fig and Olive store and deli has joined forces with East Coast Surf and opened a new combined store

Fig and Olive store and deli has joined forces with East Coast Surf and opened a new combined store in Cromer. - Credit: Sonya Duncan

Fig and Olive store and deli has joined forces with East Coast Surf and opened a new combined store

Fig and Olive store and deli has joined forces with East Coast Surf and opened a new combined store in Cromer. - Credit: Sonya Duncan

Fig and Olive store and deli has joined forces with East Coast Surf and opened a new combined store

Fig and Olive store and deli has joined forces with East Coast Surf and opened a new combined store in Cromer. - Credit: Sonya Duncan

Fig and Olive store and deli has joined forces with East Coast Surf and opened a new combined store

Fig and Olive store and deli has joined forces with East Coast Surf and opened a new combined store in Cromer. - Credit: Sonya Duncan

Fig and Olive store and deli has joined forces with East Coast Surf and opened a new combined store

Fig and Olive store and deli has joined forces with East Coast Surf and opened a new combined store in Cromer. - Credit: Sonya Duncan

Fig and Olive store and deli has joined forces with East Coast Surf and opened a new combined store

Fig and Olive store and deli has joined forces with East Coast Surf and opened a new combined store in Cromer. - Credit: Sonya Duncan

Fig and Olive store and deli has joined forces with East Coast Surf and opened a new combined store

Fig and Olive store and deli has joined forces with East Coast Surf and opened a new combined store in Cromer. Pictured are Rachel Parkin and Mark Southgate. - Credit: Sonya Duncan