A games cafe in the centre of Oxford has been closed for months and may never reopen.

Newlyweds Matthew Wellington and Andra Gheorghe opened their business Geek Retreat on New Inn Hall Street in August last year.

The gaming café, part of a countrywide franchise, invites all those who love board games, Pokémon, and comics to settle in and enjoy the relaxed environment.

Read again: Thirsty Meeples closes in on birthday celebrations 

Over several months the cafe built up a good following in the gaming community but at the start of the year it closed and so far has not reopened.

Oxford Mail:

Its proximity to the well-established Thirsty Meeples cafe in Gloucester Green, which is approaching its 10th anniversary, may not have helped.

And the couple running the cafe did not live in Oxford so they had to factor in a long commute to their working days.

In a message to customers on the cafe's Facebook page Matthew and Andra said: "Good morning all our loyal geeks,

"It is with a heavy heart that myself and Andra are announcing the closing of Geek Retreat Oxford as of this evening.

Read more: Rev Richard Coles gets 'paws up' at book signing

"It has been a fun 6 months but ultimately covid got us. We are still overwhelmed by the amount of support and how quickly we grew the communities in the store. We are proud of what we have achieved and we hope that someone eventually takes what we have built and runs with it to improve it further.

Oxford Mail:

"We want to take this time to thank every single customer that has walked through the door to show us some support and every customer that has helped out at times around the shop.

"We have made more than customers, we have made friends that we will continue to talk to beyond this venture.

Read again: Nine fascinating photos from the 1980s

"We will now pass Geek Retreat Oxford back to head office whilst they look at next steps regarding the shop.

Oxford Mail:

"Thank you all again, this isn't goodbye, this is see you down the road."

Customer Alan Goodenough wrote: "Oxford needed this shop. It was an absolute privilege to work for you guys - I miss it daily. Such a sad day but you've got so much to look forward to. Take care."

Lots of other customers also left goodwill messages.

Oxford has a strong board games community, with Thirsty Meeples cafe at the heart of it, hosting players and selling board games.

Oxford Mail:

Hoyle's in High Street sells traditional games while The Gameskeeper in Cowley Road is also a popular destination for players.

Read more from this author

This story was written by Andy Ffrench, he joined the team more than 20 years ago and now covers community news across Oxfordshire.

Get in touch with him by emailing: Andy.ffrench@newsquest.co.uk

Follow him on Twitter @OxMailAndyF