Vincenzo’s: Family ‘will fight’ decision to knock down restaurant for student flats plan ‘all the way’

The Ricci siblings say they won’t give up their family home without a fight
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A Bristol-Italian family who look set to be evicted from the restaurant they have called home for 52 years after plans were approved to build a block of student flats at the site say they will fight the decision ‘all the way’.

Vincenzo’s Pizza House, which has stood on Park Street since 1970 when it was opened by Sicilian-born couple Vincenzo and Teresa Ricci, could soon be demolished to make way for student flats after a judge’s decision paved the way for development proposals by the building’s owners Urbina.

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Planning permission was already granted for development before a judge allowed a notice given by the landlord for the family to leave at a hearing at Bristol County Court on Monday.

The siblings have told nostalgic stories about how they slept on pizza flour sacks under the warmth of the oven and created a sun terrace on the roof of the restaurant, but say they now ‘risk losing it all’ along with ‘50 years of authentic Bristol culture’.

Isabella told BristolWorld: “It’s all been terrible this close to Christmas. But we will be fighting this all the way.

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“It’s not like we’ve been here for a year or two. We’ve been here for more than half a century, we grew up here.

“Vincenzo’s Pizza House is one of the very few remaining family restaurants in Bristol.

Vincenzo’s Pizza House has stood on Park Street for 52 years.Vincenzo’s Pizza House has stood on Park Street for 52 years.
Vincenzo’s Pizza House has stood on Park Street for 52 years.

“Why build student flats? The last thing our city needs is more student flats and our customers agree with us.

“There are plenty of spaces for new developments. Why target our restaurant?

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“Let’s hope that somebody listens to us, and this all goes in our favour.

“I don’t know what we’ll do otherwise.”

Isabella added that the siblings would appeal against the judge’s decision, which ‘could take some time’.

The restaurant will be open over Christmas, closing its doors tonight (December 24) before resuming service on December 27.

David Pigott, director of the building owners Urbina, said it would be difficult to ascertain when a final decision would be made, as it depends if the court will allow the appeal.

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