Petrol attack shopkeeper opens spice shop and restaurant in former pub

Former Gallon Pot in Great Yarmouth has been remodelled as World of Spices

Yogarajah Krishnapillai in his new shop in Great Yarmouth. The 49-year-old was hailed for his bravery in Norwich after foiling a petrol attack. - Credit: Liz Coates

The new owner of a former pub says he has received a warm welcome despite initial grumblings about the loss of a once popular watering hole.

Yogarajah Krishnapillai prides himself on being able to source fresh vegetables from across the world imported from India and Sri Lanka, as well as trying to obtain specific items on request.

The 49-year-old, who lives in Gorleston with his wife and children, has transformed the former Gallon Pot on Great Yarmouth's historic Market Place and Church Plain into a spice shop called World of Spices, an off-licence, and restaurant.

Former Gallon Pot in Great Yarmouth has been remodelled as World of Spices

The former Gallon Pot in Great Yarmouth now houses a spice shop over two floors and a restaurant called the Indian Food Club. - Credit: Liz Coates

As well as trading in an array of Asian foods over two floors, there is also a restaurant on the site - which is run as a separate enterprise - opening on Sunday (October 24) called the Indian Food Club.

What made that special was that it was run by cooks using authentic spices and ingredients from his shop, he said.

Moving to the Gallon Pot meant closing his Asian grocery shop  in Broad Row.

Former Gallon Pot in Great Yarmouth has been remodelled as World of Spices

The Gallon Pot in Great Yarmouth has been remodelled as an Asian food shop and restaurant. - Credit: Liz Coates

The bigger unit - although expensive to remodel - means he can stock a wider variety of produce as well as benefit from a more visible spot with better parking, he said.

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Although at first he received some negative feedback from people sad to see the back of the pub they had mostly come round and were happy to be able to get hold of foods they had to travel to Norwich and beyond for before.

Mr Krishnapillai, known as Bobby, previously had a shop Red Pepper in Gorleston High Street.

In 2015 he hit the headlines after a robber poured petrol over him and tried to set him alight. A 36-year-old man was arrested but never  charged.

Former Gallon Pot in Great Yarmouth has been remodelled as World of Spices

The Indian Food Club is opening on Sunday (October 24) in the former Gallon Pot. - Credit: Liz Coates

At the time he ran three shops in Norwich.

After the incident he moved to Gorleston, turning his back on convenience store work and - spotting a gap in the spice market - starting up a shop in the high street.

He said he had customers from all over Norfolk and Suffolk, some of whom received whatsapp alerts when particularly desirable ingredients came in stock.

World of Spice in the former Gallon Pot pub.

World of Spices is adding to the flavour of Great Yarmouth's Market Place with a new restaurant opening on Sunday, October 24. - Credit: Liz Coates

The Gallon Pot underwent a £20,000  refurbishment in 2019  but was put up for sale in 2020 for £250,000.

It was rebuilt after being bombed in the Second World War.

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