Three outstretched hands holding coffee cups

How a trendy bistro in Tidworth brings the community together


When ex-military couple, Phil Smith and Irene, discovered their mutual love of food and business, there was only one way for their future venture to go:

As a family, we have always had a passion for food and cooking so we started out in a gazebo as a street food company before progressing on to our first restaurant. We felt a sense of freedom and the excitement of being masters of our own destiny together. We were not scared to take on a challenge, thankfully, and we threw ourselves into making it a success.

Now, their trendy bistro, Pothead and Panface, serves a wide range of food, from freshly cooked breakfast to bratwurst, schnitzels, burgers, and a great range of milkshake and waffles, plus quality coffee.

However, not having any prior knowledge of running a restaurant proved a challenge in the early months as the couple needed to make extensive renovations to their premises.

Thankfully X Forces came to the rescue… with a very welcome start-up loan of £18k:

We can’t thank X-Forces enough. Their speed and professionalism in helping us to build and fine tune our business plan through to arranging our loan is beyond words.  It felt like a personal relationship rather than a business one. They are always available on the end of the phone and kept us updated constantly during the loan application process.
During the first quarter of being open, our turnover increased consistently each month and we have now developed quite a following in the town, with many families that visit regularly. We have extended our reach to offer event catering for weddings and parties.

See more information about “Pothead and Panhead” (and mouthwatering food)…

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