‘Mr Bacon and Eggs’ takes new menu to KCDC HQ after Council bosses issue street banBy Alan and Helen Tristram
Council bosses in Kapiti tried to ban cafe owner Peter Slight from Kapiti Road when he took out a small sign into the Kapiti Lights area .
But you can’t keep a good man down — even if you’re an officious Council — and Peter has turned himself into a walking ad for his cafe’s $9.90 bacon and eggs.
He’s even walked through the entrance to the new KCDC headquarters, equipped with his specially-made advertising rainjacket, which even zealous council clerks are unable to ban from the streets.
The trouble began when someone (perhaps a rival cafe owner?) complained to the KCDC about Mr Slight’s habit of walking into the streets with a small signboard advertising Cafe Palm’s $6 scone and coffee deal.
Mr Slight says he did this because he was keen to attract new business. He and his wife Alice were determined to make a go of their new life on the Coast after many years in the cafe business in Kilbirnie and the Hutt.
They moved to Paraparaumu a year ago and found everybody friendly and helpful — until the Kapiti Coast District Council slapped a ban notice on them.
Mr Slight says they are just small businesspeople trying to make a go of things…and they thought the council was trying to help people like them. There is, after, all a special council pamphlet aimed at encouraging small business owners. (it’s available in the new offices just behind Mr Slight in the photo).
He says, he and his wife have never had any trouble in Wellington or the Hutt from Council officials. And, he says, the council seems to allow youngsters on the streets with ads for pizzas and fast food.
A letter from the KCDC’s so-called ‘Ace Team Limited’ says:
“It has come to the attention of Council that non-compliant signage (see right) is being displayed intermittently advertising Cafe Palms within the legal road boundary on Kapiti Road…
“The current signage may only be displayed if resource consent is applied for and granted by Council.
“If the non-compliant signage continues to be displayed within the legal road, Council will pursue enforcement action.”
So Mr Slight had to put his coffee and scone sign into storage. But then he came up with a brainwave — arranging for a specially-illustrated coat to carry his message to passers by. Obviously, locals like it as he’s become something of a ‘Pied Piper,’ with customers following him back to his cafe!