The transformation of Fossgate into a hub of food and drink continues.

Another new café is set to open on the York city centre street. Ambers Coffee and Tea House wants to open at 49 Fossgate – currently the home of Signatures of York.

This specialist shop, which has been trading for 25 years, sells a huge range of pens and accessories from brands including Pilot, Mont Blanc and Waterman.

The good news is that Signatures will be trading until at least Christmas. Then, if City of York Council grants permission for the premises to be changed from retail use to a café, the tea house could open in its place some time early next year.

Leather armchairs

Signatures on Fossgate. Photograph: Gwen Swinburn
Under plans submitted by Paul Saparis, 49 Fossgate would be changed from retail to food and drink.

That would allow Ambers Coffee and Tea House to open there. According to documents filed with the council:

  • Ambers Tea and Coffee House will be a trendy, high-end coffee and tea house offering high quality food and drink to locals and tourists.

    Decor will consist of neutral soothing colours. Furniture will be mainly soft chairs, leather armchairs. Most of the furniture will be hand-picked and bought separately, to create a unique look.

    Relaxing music such as jazz, electroswing will be played in the background. Property exterior will be painted pastel green colour, and signage written in classic font.

The logo for the new café

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All these York shops have become bars or restaurants in just eight years

Ambers will serve mainly cold food prepared elsewhere and delivered to the café.

This will include sandwiches and cake. No cooking or baking will be done on site.

The news underlines the trend for shops being turned into cafés and restaurants. In April a survey by YorkMix found that 42 shops had been turned into food outlets in eight years.

A taskforce has been set up to attract more retailers to York city centre. In recent weeks, YorkMix has reported that B&M is opening a branch at Foss Islands Retail Park this month, while toy store The Entertainer has applied to move to Coney Street.