HE was one half of UK garage duo Artful Dodger, and helped launch the career of Craig David, but these days Pete Devereux spends more time behind the counter of his coffee shop than behind the decks.

Pete's business Deveroast is going from strength to strength, less than four months after it opened at Botley Mills, the historic site of a Hampshire milling company which now also provides retail units for more than 40 local businesses. 

With the strapline 'the artful roaster', music does of course feature with alternative music station BBC 6 Music a constant fixture in the background.

READ MORE: Roasts for dogs and candlelit dinners at community-owned pub

But really it's all about superb coffee in a spectacular setting. Pete hand roasts speciality grade, sustainable, and ethically sourced coffee on-site weekly. 

Customers flock to the stripped-back 300-year-old former engine room of the mill for a cup of the signature Old Engine Room blend served with local cows or oat milk alongside a locally baked cake or cookie.

Tucked away beside the River Hamble, Deveroast has also become a mecca for aficionados wanting a top coffee from Brazil, Colombia, El Salvador or Rwanda to enjoy at home.

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The fledgling business was first dreamed up during the first Covid lockdown.

Pete, who lives in Bitterne Park, has a next-door neighbour who runs SOroast and delivered coffee supplies to see him through the bleak weeks ahead.

Son Eli, now 14, suggested his Dad turn his newfound love for roasting coffee into a business during a lockdown walk and even came up with the name Deveroast, a play on their surname. 

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"I've always loved coffee, but never dreamed of working with it, so I have Covid to thank for this.

"It was a lightbulb moment really and everything has come together since. I wish I'd done it ten years ago."

It wouldn't have been possible without the support of Pete's girlfriend Kelly Jane, who runs her own business but can often be found helping out behind the counter at weekends.

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Deveroast boasts indoor and outdoor seating on reclaimed furniture, including the upcycled original door.

Pete is also working on some rediscovered music which is set for release in 2023.

As part of Artful Dodger, with Mark Hill, Pete was one of the figureheads of the UK garage movement. Their 1999 track Re-Rewind with Craig David reached number two in the charts.

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