This Portsmouth cafe has a new look - and it's been hidden for more than 50 years

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IT’S a sign of things to come even though it's more than 50-years old.

The owners of the cafe in Copnor Road were trying to think of a new name for the business when renovation work revealed its original name from the 1970s - Lennard's Cafe.

Matthew Mason, who has taken over the site, discovered the vintage lettering at the front of the cafe after removing its former signage, when it was known as Pam's Cafe and then Marmalade Cafe.

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Matthew said the find fit 'perfectly' with his idea of a vintage themed cafe.

Matthew Mason celebrates after he discovered the original sign to his cafe in Copnor Road. Picture: Ian Hargreaves  (110819-4)Matthew Mason celebrates after he discovered the original sign to his cafe in Copnor Road. Picture: Ian Hargreaves  (110819-4)
Matthew Mason celebrates after he discovered the original sign to his cafe in Copnor Road. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (110819-4) | JPIMedia

He said: 'We're going to have all the staff in vintage uniform to create a Peaky Blinders-style.

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'But we hadn't come up with a name - so when we uncovered the sign I thought it was a fantastic fit.'

The sign has brought back memories for many residents along the road, according to Matthew.

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Matthew Mason celebrates after he discovered the original sign to his cafe in Copnor Road. Picture: Ian Hargreaves  (110819-6)Matthew Mason celebrates after he discovered the original sign to his cafe in Copnor Road. Picture: Ian Hargreaves  (110819-6)
Matthew Mason celebrates after he discovered the original sign to his cafe in Copnor Road. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (110819-6) | JPIMedia

He said: 'We've had people coming in telling us they remember when the place had the sign out front.

'Apparently, Lennard was an ex-army chef and he used to work here with his mother.

'We've had comments on Facebook that have said you would have lorries queuing up to get in here.'

The accountant from North End has spent more than £20,000 on the 'adventure' of running a community focused cafe.

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He said: 'I've never been in the catering trade, but I've always wanted to own a cafe and I wanted a new adventure.

'We're looking to get a licence so we can serve drinks, and we're perfecting our menu at the moment.'

Food currently on offer includes Full English breakfasts, a variety of sandwiches, and a kids lunch menu, with a kids play area onsite.

The cafe is currently open 7.30pm to 4pm, with plans for it to remain open until 10pm once it is licensed to serve alcohol.

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Matthew, a 'massive' Pompey fan, plans to broadcast football matches from the TV in the 'astro-turf' section of the cafe, after a planned grand opening with former Portsmouth FC player Steve Claridge in attendance.

He said: 'We've had a soft open, and we're planning a much bigger launch soon.'