Rising costs and fewer customers may lead to the closure of a fish and chip shop, one owner has warned.

The threat of closure is very real for many businesses as the cost-of-living crisis continues.

The last time the Watford Observer reported on the fish and chip shop industry the main concern was about restaurants struggling to buy sunflower oil because it is exported from Ukraine.

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But now, owners say all aspects of running their business are having a negative impact on their finances.

The Great Bushey Fish and Chip Shop in Bushey Mill Lane, Watford, is a family-run business that has been open for two years.

Mehmet Akkaya, who is part of the family that runs the shop, fears the business might have to close.

He said: “It’s a possibility that closing could happen.

“The fish and the meat prices have rocketed sky high. I feel like this is just the start and prices are going to go higher and higher.

“We are not getting any help and we are struggling to pay the bills.”

It is a similar story for Harry Kyriakou, owner of The Corner Plaice in Baldwins Lane, Croxley Green.

He said: “Everything has gone up, gas, all the food produce. We have had to put our prices up every month for the past three months.

“Customers have understood, but at the start a couple had a shock.”

Zack Pelit, manager of Codland Fish & Chips in Courtlands Drive, Watford, has not had to increase the prices as he once feared.

Despite it not happening yet, it could still be an option, he warned.

He added: “For customers, fish and chips is becoming a luxury. Before, they might buy it two or three times a week. Now, it’s a once-a-week option.

“We haven’t seen some of our regulars come in at all in the last few weeks.

Currently, Mr Pelit is not worried the store will have to close.

But he said: “It makes you think, ‘is it worth standing here if you can’t support your family’.”

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