Archers News

Chinese Restaurant Name Change is “Completely Woking Crazy”

Posted in Food and Drink, General Interest by archersnews on February 12, 2010
The Magic Wok - may be forced to change name

The Magic Wok – may be forced to change name

One of London’s best loved Chinese Restaurants, the “Magic Wok” in Hackney, North East London has been ordered to change its name in a move that has been branded “mindless, interfering and petty local government”.

Magic Wok’s owners Wi and Lavinia Wong have been ordered to change their name or face closure. Mike Harris of The London Borough of Hackney has written to them stating “To use ‘magic’ in this sense, describing your wok as ‘magic’, clearly suggests or allows the impression to be formed that your establishment, its wok, food or noodles somehow possesses supernatural powers. As no evidence has been shown to support this claim you are asked to find a more factual description of your establishment by February 15th failing which our officers will take out an injunction against your establishment.”

Local MP Tom Hollingsworth has called it “plain nonsense” saying “it is completely outrageous, petty and interfering local government at its worst. I can’t believe anyone in their right mind would come to the Magic Wok expecting a magic show or expecting David Copperfield to be working in the kitchen. It’s clearly just a light-hearted name.”

Mike Harris told us however “These guidelines are there to protect the consumer. We are merely asking Wi and Lavinia Wong to make a small name change so it is within the council and Fair Trading Standard’s guidelines”.

But what of the neighbouring “Noodle Fun” restaurant. Surely that is also objectionable? Mr Harris replied “That case had been thoroughly investigated. Fun in that sense was actually the name of the proprietor. Had it been meant in the usual sense of ‘joy’ or ‘gaiety’ we would certainly have taken firm action”

Mr Wong told us  “Mike Harris has made our lives a nightmare for months now. Writing to us many times and even carrying out random inspections – once even in the dead of night”.

Mrs Wong added: “The reason is pretty obvious to me anyway – he’s been knocking off Jenny Lin, the owner of the Hot Dumpling for months now. It‘s something to do with that, just to drive us away.“

Mike Harris did not return our call yesterday.