The owner of a Roffey cafe has feared for the safety of children in the area after a car accident damaged the front of his shop on Wednesday (January 23).
And the owner of the neighbouring newsagent said the collision at Panino cafe in Crawley Road ‘could have killed someone’ had it taken place earlier in the day.
Giovanni Barozzi, 54, is the owner of Panino, which has been in the community since 1990.
He said: “A lot of children stand in front of the candy shop and mums leave pushchairs there - often you have pushchairs or bikes out there. It is sad.
“I have been here for so many years and it is hard enough to make a living.”
The collision occurred at about 6.20pm.
Mr Barozzi said the accident happened as the driver attempted a manoeuvre in the forecourt outside the cafe.
He added how he hoped the driver would have the ‘heart’ to come back to the cafe and apologise, but urged any witnesses to come forward with information.
He said: “If somebody has seen it, for the sake of the kids outside and for the safety of the community, please tell us.
“Roffey has become a community, the change is vast, so let’s keep it that way.”
Brad Patel, 48, the owner of Chirag Newsagent next door to the cafe, was serving customers when he heard a ‘loud bang’ from outside.
He said: “Luckily it wasn’t two hours earlier - it could have killed someone.
“I heard the really loud bang and it shook the building, it was a big impact.
“By the time I came out the car was driving out and it didn’t give me a chance to check the registration.”
A Sussex Police spokesperson said: “We were called at 8.45am today (Thursday January 23) to a report that a car had crashed into Panino in Crawley Road, Horsham, at some time yesterday.
“The incident is being investigated.”
Anyone with information can call 101 quoting serial 210 of 23/1, or contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.