After months of discussions and negotiations behind the scenes, a new group has stepped forward with plans to secure a much needed replacement for the well-loved but derelict tea rooms in Belper’s River Gardens.
The Belper Tearooms Association was created by a number of community organisations, residents and others, to look at finally replacing the old Swiss-style tea rooms (first built 110 years ago), taking into consideration design, sustainability and possible funding.
The ‘Swiss Tea Cottage’ at the north end of the gardens was built in 1906. It is the last major original building in the gardens, after the Pavillion, used for dances, concerts and public functions, was demolished in 1965.
In recent years the Tea Rooms have been neglected and unused.
This week the Association heard that site owner Amber Valley Borough Council is willing to work in partnership with them, to get the work done. Spokesman Trevor Griffin said: “That’s great news for us, and means we can move forward in establishing ourselves in a more formal way. It allows this project to go forward in a way we believe will meet the wishes of the people who will use it.
“The public have waited a long time for the tearooms, and we cannot wait to get started on looking at a new more cost effective design, and raising the funds to get it built.”
The Association will be consulting with the public and anyone who wishes to be involved can contact Trevor on 01773 821920.
At this stage they are particularly interested in finding volunteers to help with this project who have marketing, legal or engineering experience, but any support – even a donation – will be welcomed.