Husband-and-wife owners of Thai Pavilion restaurant bid farewell to Sudbury after 20 years in business
After two memorable decades of serving authentic Thai cuisine at their restaurant in Sudbury, a husband and wife team have bid farewell to customers.
Ray Edwards and wife Sirannee opened their first restaurant, Thai Pavilion, in Friars Street in 1999.
Reflecting on their time at the eatery before deciding to retire, Mr Edwards said: “We have thoroughly enjoyed every moment; we’ve had our ups and downs as a business, but it’s the customers who have made it special.”
Married for 46 years, the couple met in London where Mr Edwards was responsible for his own printing company, while Sirannee worked in various roles at banks in the capital.
After settling in Sudbury, Mrs Edwards was keen to open their own Thai food restaurant.
Originally from Bangkok in Thailand, she was inspired to replicate some of her mother’s traditional dishes.
“Her mother was a great chef,” said Mr Edwards, 73. “And she set up the first finishing school there.”
Having been brought up at The Grand Palace in Thailand, which had once served as the official residence of the Kings of Siam, Mrs Edwards was a member of the Smuthklin family, who are well-respected in the country.
“Being the only foreigner in the family, they made me feel very welcome,” said Mr Edwards.
In her role as head chef, Mrs Edwards has been responsible for cooking all the dishes at the restaurant, while Mr Edwards worked front of house.
When they first opened the eatery, essential ingredients needed to make the traditional dishes had to be sourced from further afield.
“We used to go to town once a week and buy the ingredients,” said Mr Edwards. “Because you could buy most of them in Colchester, Ipswich and Bury.”
Sophie Faldo, a former waitress at the restaurant, was crowned winner of the television competition Great British Bake Off in 2017.
The 35-year-old was a student at Barnardiston Prep School in Haverhill, where the couple’s three children attended.
More by this authorPriya Kingsley-Adam