Covent Garden family pharmacy to close

Connie and Harry Ganz

Connie and Harry Ganz

One of the last independent shops in the Covent Garden area of central London is to close this week, with its Jewish founders blaming high rents and rates for making the business unsustainable.

The Garden Pharmacy was opened by grandparents Harry and Connie Ganz in 1984.

Surrounded by London’s top theatres, its customers include actors Rupert Everett, Simon Callow and Amanda Barrie.

But with an annual rent of £600,000 and a £230,000 business rate, the couple are calling it a day.

Mrs Ganz, a member of the Bridge Lane Beth Hamedrash synagogue, said: “We’re an old-fashioned business with a very nice customer base. Some of our staff have been with us for 25 years — it’s not easy for them either.”

She said the demise of small businesses in the area was a shame.

“Now everything is uniform — the same shops with the same type of thing.”

The business will continue online.

Last updated: 10:07am, March 23 2014