AN eatery with a name inspired by an Australian character will open at Wodonga's Mann Central this Thursday.
Blind Freddy's Cafe is part of a livening up of the shopping hub, with fast food chain Subway to open in another store at Mann Central after suffering a downturn at its existing High Street outlet.
Cafe proprietor John Miseski said he had a list of names under consideration but Blind Freddy's stood out.
"I just liked the name of Blind Freddy," he said.
The term has a hazy origin with it either originating from a central west NSW policeman outwitted by bushranger Ben Hall or a Sydney hawker whose blindness did not limit his mobility.
No doubt it will now be a punchline for people not knowing where the Wodonga cafe can be found.
Mr Miseski has run Albury eateries for 15 years and believes Mann Central is an attractive proposition.
"We had been looking for a place and Mann Central is primed with Kmart and Coles," he said.
"We want to create something that is cool, different and a little bit funky.
"My opinion is that Wodonga is maturing and has the potential to become a hub for the Albury-Wodonga community and once High Street opens up it will be just great."
Blind Freddy's Cafe, which has seating for 100-plus, will be open Mondays to Saturdays 7am to 5pm, with breakfast being served until 3pm.
It follows the previous launch of a sushi restaurant at the Mann Central complex which began trading in October 2017 with Coles and Kmart opening.
A shop in the centre, opposite Blind Freddy's Cafe and also facing Elgin Boulevard, will begin trading as a Subway store by the end of the month.
It is being fitted out in the decor of the franchise which originated in the United States in 1965 in a city in Connecticut.
The new location will result in Subway's existing central Wodonga store in High Street shutting down.
Subway first opened in the premises next to the Tower Arcade and opposite Woodland Grove in October 2002.
Another Wodonga store at the Birallee shopping centre opened in 2005.
Over recent months trading and access at the High Street store has been affected by the closure of the thoroughfare at the front door due to a revamp by Wodonga Council.
That has seen a significant drop in income for the store which is owned by Mohammad Shamim after having previously been established by the Ainsworth family.
It is expected access to greater car parking at Mann Central will help draw more customers.