A New Cafe on the Cliff

The outdoor kiosk at The Oval Bandstand & Lawns will reopen as a cafe. 

GRASS Cliftonville CIC will open the fully refurbished kiosk as a not-for-profit social enterprise, offering training and job opportunities to local people. The kiosk will help to ensure that The Oval Bandstand & Lawns site will be self-funded. 

It is now hoped it will open during the Autumn half term. GRASS is currently renovating the dilapidated kiosk that was left in an appalling state after it was last used five years ago. When we took it over the kiosk was filthy and filled with detritus, so it really was a massive challenge to get the place tidied up and ready to trade. 

GRASS Director Stephen Darrer said: “Our plan is to offer training and paid jobs. There is so much potential here and we think we can provide a great, affordable service for the community as well as building skills with training opportunities and jobs for unemployed adults. Initially we will be offering food hygiene training as well as barista training to our dedicated team.” 

“Unfortunately, we are not opening the kiosk at the best time of year but if we can get going and make it work during the quieter winter season, then hopefully it will be even better when the weather improves. By opening now, we hope that we can support the year-round swimmers at Walpole Bay and offer much needed coastal toilet facilities for those walking the Viking Coastal Trail on the Cliftonville coastline. So many inquisitive dog walkers and visitors have been popping by to offer words of support and to tell us they can’t wait for the kiosk to open, as many didn’t even know it was there.” 

GRASS plans to offer good quality coffee and other drinks, soup and cakes, and a seasonal menu, including ice cream in the summer months, all at affordable prices. All your purchases will contribute to maintaining the site and will help fund community events, including the free Summer Sundays concerts that will start again at The Oval Bandstand & Lawns in April next year.