October 7, 2022 6.55 am This story is over 13 months old

Popular Lincoln tea room owner selling business after three bouts of COVID

He wants the new owner to keep the magic of the tea room going

The owner of a popular tea room in Lincoln wants to find someone new to take the reins and keep the magic alive as he has been struggling with the effects of contracting coronavirus three times.

Des Davis opened Margaret’s Tea Rooms on Garmston Street in Lincoln in March 2017 and named it in tribute to his late mum.

He built up what he describes as a “little gem” from scratch into a “gorgeous award-winning business”.

Des, who once featured on Channel 4 reality show First Dates, told The Lincolnite he is still struggling with the long-term effects of coronavirus and wants to find a new owner to takeover by early in 2023 as there is “no way I’m missing the fun of one last Christmas,” he said.

He first caught coronavirus in January 2020 before contracting it again around nine months later.

He then became one of the first people in the county to receive a new experimental COVID drug treatment after the symptoms hit him “like a speeding truck”.

Around a month and a half ago Des caught COVID and was given the drug treatment again.

Des is ready to pass on the reins to a new owner.

He said: “The drug works, the more worrying thing for me is how much COVID hits me when I get it. I don’t really want to get it a fourth time.”

When asked what the long-term effects are that he is suffering with, he said: “Fatigue, pain in my joints, and I get brain fog. Sometimes I am okay and sometimes it is difficult.”

Des Davis was one of the first people in Lincolnshire to receive a new experimental COVID drug treatment.

Des is selling the tea room as a ‘turnkey’ established business venture so the new owner can walk straight in and open for guests.

He said: “It’s a hard decision, but it’s quite taxing now because I have got the long-term effects from it (coronavirus).

“It’s a fantastic little business and it really deserves to be open seven days a week, but I physically just can’t do it.

“It needs to stay as Margaret’s. I’ve been building the reputation for nearly six years and it’s on the map with five star reviews on Trip Advisor and has won lots of awards.

“It’s a lovely surprise how it’s evolved, it’s a go-to place now, and I don’t think when I first started I thought that far ahead.

“I am proud as it started off as nothing and the premises was quite dishevelled and I decorated it and spent a month getting it ready. I’ve constantly kept reinvesting and when I’ve made money I have put it back into it.

“I think if my mum was present, she would absolutely be chuffed to bits, it’s worked out exactly how I wanted it to. It’s just unfortunate that I’m poorly and I’d like the next person to come in and take over the reins.”

He described his appearance on First Dates as a “car crash encounter”.

Des is determined that whoever takes over will keep it as a tea room, adding: “To my regular guests and friends I’ve made, I’d like to say thank you to them, it’s been an absolute joy.

“The tea room will still continue as I want to find someone who will love it as much as me. It will lose Des, but not it’s magic that the customers all love.”

Des said any buyers with genuine interest should contact him directly on 07796 580226, but for now he’s focusing on his final Christmas at the helm.

He will be doing a crystal Christmas this year and decorating the tea room like “a nice winter wonderland”. Des also plans to have his Christmas shop installed early at the end of October, selling jams, marmalades, chutneys, and hand-crafted tree decorations, as well as festive afternoon teas.

Des getting festive at Margaret’s Tea Rooms.

Des also revealed his plans for the future once the right buyer is found.

He added: “Over the last six years I’ve created five teas that belong to my family story – Memoirs Tea Collection.

“My plan is to start an online business called Memoirs Tea Collection, selling the five I’ve created – Scotch Mist, Aphrodi’tea, Black Forest, Margaret’s Garden, and Mum’s Crumble. I created the teas on the Mother’s Days I’ve been open each year.”