A campaign is underway to keep the Dublin coffee house Bewley's Oriental Cafés from closing.

After 165 years in business, the two Bewley’s cafés are due to close for business at six o’clock next Tuesday. Hundreds of people gathered outside Bewley’s on Grafton Street this morning calling for the cafés to be saved and collecting signatures for a petition.

Established in 1840, many Dubliners feel that Bewley’s is too strong a part of the city’s history to lose.

People on Grafton Street spoke about the closure of a café that is seen as an institution which holds so many memories.

I’m absolutely devastated. I love Bewley’s. I think it’s a national institution.

Damien Cassidy of the Save Bewley’s Campaign believes that a national trust is needed to preserve living monuments like the cafés.

While Bewley’s welcomed the support, the decision to close coffee houses followed careful consideration over many years.

An RTÉ News report broadcast on 24 November 2004. The reporter is Sari Houlihan.