First glimpse of what refurbished Waterways cafe will look like
PUBLISHED: 13:07 17 November 2017 | UPDATED: 13:07 17 November 2017
Future visitors to Great Yarmouth’s soon-to-be refurbished seafront Waterways will have the perfect place to shelter from the winter’s worst or enjoy a sunny summer sit-down.
For new architects’ drawings reveal the shape of things to come at the boating lake cafe in the heart of the resort’s much-loved Venetian-style attraction.
Blending original 20th century features with a modern drive for comfort and design, distinctive arches that have long been bricked up will be revived and glazed to create a year-round cafe.
Under the scheme submitted to borough council planners the existing timber-boarded ceiling will be retained and painted, and all the re-thatching done in traditional Norfolk reed.
Reviving the island cafe - which will also serve as a kiosk for boating tickets - is a key element of the £2.7m, three year scheme, and one of the few features that requires planning consent.
A borough council spokesman said: “The planning application is an outward indication of the huge preparatory work taking place behind the scenes ahead of on-site work starting in spring 2018, as is the removal of the wooden animal heads, which are currently stored at St John’s Church ready to be conserved by volunteers and trainees to be re-used as part of the restoration project in some way.”
Between summer 2018 and summer 2019, volunteers and trainees will work alongside contractors, craftsmen and professionals to reinstate the original planting scheme from 1928, and repair the thatched shelters.
People will also have the chance to participate in a varied programme of other associated activities, such as researching and a design workshop.
The work will be phased to ensure areas of the park remain open to the public.
Boats will initially return to the purpose-built boating lake, where they will be available for hire from the refurbished island café.
If there proves sufficient demand, there will be the option to introduce trips to the scenic winding canals.
The community-led project to restore the Grade II-listed gardens is supported with a grant of £1.7m from the Heritage Lottery Fund and Big Lottery Fund.
Further support has come from the New Anglia LEP, and the Department for Communities and Local Government.