Cafe in historic park pavilion to reopen after £36,000 renovation
- Credit: Norwich City Council
The café at Waterloo Park in Norwich is set to reopen under new management after closing suddenly last year.
Formerly known as Café Park Britannia, situated in a Grade II listed pavilion owned by Norwich City Council, it went up for rent.
A contract has now been given for five years to the charity The Feed, a not-for-profit social enterprise and charity that aims to prevent poverty, hunger and homelessness in Norwich.
The Feed currently has sites in the city including a café in Prince of Wales Road, a bistro at Kettle Foods and The Feed Café in Bethel Street.
The Feed will offer an affordable varied menu in the Waterloo cafe, ranging from pastries, cakes, fried breakfasts and healthier alternatives, jacket potatoes, ciabattas, street food, salads and soups. Upstairs space will offer a room for use by the community.
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Shirley Jordan, chairman of Friends of Waterloo Park, said: "We are delighted. Apart from serving good food at a good price, The Feed is very keen to work in the community."
She added that everyone had been vying for the café to reopen since it shut because when it was run by Britannia Enterprises the enterprise became a focus point for park visitors.
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Councillor Matthew Packer, cabinet member responsible for parks and play areas, said: “The Feed has conducted thorough research into the park and considered park users’ requirements, which will be reflected in the varied menu they will be offering.
“It was very clear that the community is at the heart of what they do. All food is locally sourced and any profits that they make will be given to the Feed foundation to support the work that they do in the community.
“The city council has been carrying out a programme of improvement works to Waterloo Park, including repairs to the ornamental pond, so having the café reopen to the public this summer with such a great offering is the perfect addition to this well-loved park.”
More than 60 interested parties contacted the city council about running the café when the lease was first advertised.
Norwich City Council has spent £36,000 on refurbishing the building. Work included upgrading the lighting and electricity supply, the lift and fire alarm system.
Lucy Parish, chief executive officer of The Feed, said: “We are absolutely thrilled to have been given the opportunity to bring this valuable community asset back to life.
“The Waterloo Park pavilion café will be welcoming and accessible, and at the heart of the park and the community."
It will employ five people and offer work experience.