Liverpool venue to reopen after COVID closure

A popular restaurant and tea shop in the Liverpool commercial district that closed in the early days of the COVID pandemic is to reopen in November. Tony McDonough reports

One Fine Day
One Fine Day in Old Hall Street pictured before its closure


Liverpool restaurant and tea shop venture LEAF is to reopen a city centre venue that was forced to close in the early days of the pandemic.

ONE FINE DAY in Old Hall Street in the heart of the city’s commercial district was one of the first local hospitality casualties of COVID. It closed on March 20, 2020, just days before then Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced the first lockdown.

Although other food and drink venues in the city did reopen later that year, LEAF took the decision to keep it closed. Its light lunch and brunch menu had proved popular with office workers but many of them continued to work from home even as restrictions were lifted.

LEAF did reopen the events space at the back of the venue in August 2020. It remains available for bookings. This summer the front also hosted a pop-up deli.

Now LEAF founders, siblings Natalie and Graham Haywood, have decided to reopen the venue to celebrate the company’s 15th anniversary. It will be relaunched as a new venue called Little LEAF at ONE FINE DAY on Monday, November 6.

“It feels surreal that we are reaching our 15th anniversary in November and it’s the perfect time to open Little LEAF which will be housed in the front area of ONE FINE DAY,” said Natalie.

“We’ve been thinking how to expand what we do and while maintaining our core values as a business, so to launch a smaller scale version of LEAF is giving us new momentum and ideas.”

LEAF started life back in 2008 and was the realisation of Natalie’s dream to create an alternative social space to enjoy tea. After opening a pop-up, its first proper venue was in Parliament Street. It then relocated to a prominent unit in Bold Street in 2010.

In the following years other outlets opened in Smithdown Road in south Liverpool, West Kirby in Wirral as well as event space OH ME OH MY on The Strand and ONE FINE DAY. Now the business employs more than 180 people and offers almost 100 loose-leaf teas.


Natalie Haywood
Natalie Haywood, managing director of the LEAF Group


To celebrate its 15th birthday, LEAF will host a series of events at its outlets from Friday November 3, to Saturday November 18.

These will include four Pudding Clubs ,hosted by Masterchef The Professionals winner Claire Lara, at £15 per person, plus a mix of music, Bored Of Dating Apps, craft markets and networking.

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It is also offering a new breakfast tea called Stronger English Breakfast, in honour of LEAF going strong for 15 years. And there’s a brand-new gin, too – a Chai concoction with Tappers.

Natalie added: “Seeing how we have grown with our customers is what underpins who we are and what we do.

“The origins of LEAF were simple – we wanted to honour and celebrate tea in all its forms which back in 2008 was sorely lacking in Liverpool, to reinvent the idea of a tearooms and that culture.”

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