A small but influential flower shop has shut its doors and is being sold for scrap.
The Grattville Flower Shop in Punt Road, north of Melbourne, is part of the Prattville area, a tourist destination that includes the famous Prattvillles.
It opened in 1891 and was owned by a family that would go on to become Australia’s richest.
But its demise has led to speculation about what could replace it, with many locals worried that the owners would sell off the shop and become homeless.
The shop, which was once called Pratt, had a loyal following of young women and girls who were drawn to the flowers in the garden.
But a decade ago, owner Peter Pratt started seeing his shop’s reputation in decline.
He was forced to sell the business to a family who had recently bought the property.
They began renovating the shop but Mr Pratt said it was still the same.
“I don’t think it’s been the same since.
It’s become a very different place.
The quality has dropped, the value of the property has dropped.
I think the family will sell it,” he said.”
They’re not the most financially savvy family.
They’ll probably just leave.”
Mr Pratt is not the only local to feel the pinch.
There are signs the shop has been forced to close.
The owners have been approached by other businesses who want to sell, but they are unwilling to sell because of the cost.
“It’s been a struggle for me, to make ends meet,” he told ABC Radio Melbourne.
“The price has gone up by more than $500,000.
We’ve had to take our daughter and son-in-law with us.”
This has been one of the hardest times in my life, the last three or four years.
I feel like I’m homeless.
“The shop closed its doors for good on Sunday.
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