The anxious owners of a popular Kirkby Lonsdale cafe face a tense wait to discover if they can finally re-open in time for Christmas.

Barbon-based couple Adrian and Helen Shield, 34 and 39 respectively, who own the usually bustling Crossing Point Cafe in Market Square with Helen Shield's sister Rachael Tate, 41 and partner Dave Brown, 59, were forced to close their town-centre eatery and wine merchant over two months ago after water damage caused part of their kitchen roof to collapse.

The quartet, who took over the business in November 2019, have endured a stop-start tenure up until now thanks largely to the Covid-19 pandemic, and have their fingers firmly crossed that the repair work currently underway will be successful and provide some welcome festive cheer.

Adrian said: "Every week being closed gets more frustrating. We're a wine merchant as well as a cafe and we've pretty much missed most of the Christmas trade in that regard. We've no online presence, but have a lot of high-end wine and our own exclusive Elodie champagne that is just sat in storage at the minute waiting for homes."

The cafe had to cancel and refund a fully-booked wine tasting event due just days after the collapse.

"Luckily we had a great summer, and we were around 50 per cent busier than the previous year, but we still have rent and other bills to pay just the same."

He explained that roofers have tried twice to fix the problem, but is hopeful that this more substantial repair will work.

Helen echoes Adrian's frustration: "We've built a good reputation since we opened and have loved every minute of it, but sadly we've only been open for three full months this whole year!

"We had a really good set of regular customers, and I'm hoping that they come back after being forced to go elsewhere. I do worry that this will impact on future business.

"It was a real struggle finding a roofer that would take such a big job in this weather, I think he just felt sorry for us.

"Seeing our customers before Christmas would be the best present we could wish for."