Colonnade cafe in Bexhill opens to public

The Colonnade Cafe and Restaurant, Bexhill  L-R Clare Kent, Susan Forde (Manager) and Lilly Lusted-May SUS-180726-115053001
The Colonnade Cafe and Restaurant, Bexhill L-R Clare Kent, Susan Forde (Manager) and Lilly Lusted-May SUS-180726-115053001

Visitors taking a stroll along Bexhill seafront can now refuel with a slice of cake or an ice-cream at The Colonnade.

The café restaurant opened its doors during The Great Gatsby Fair at the weekend, offering a limited menu ahead of its grand opening.

Rother District Council said the success of the weekend has prompted business and catering manager Susan Forde to open the venue with a limited menu until the building works are completed.

Mrs Forde said: “The atmosphere when we opened for The Great Gatsby Fair was amazing.

“We could only offer drinks, cakes and ice cream, but The Colonnade was buzzing and our trike bike sold tubs of ice cream and lollies along the Promenade.

“We were delighted with the support from the community and have decided to remain open to allow them to continue to enjoy the venue.”

While the menu will remain limited and only cash can be accepted, the refurbished Grade II-listed building will open seven days a week between 10am and 7pm during the summer.

The Colonnade is able to accommodate 50 diners inside and 100 on its outside terrace, which offers panoramic sea views. There is also a licensed bar.

When fully open, the venue will offer light snacks and main meals cooked on the premises using fresh, locally sourced produce. It will also host entertainment such as live music and quiz nights.

In May the district council announced that a major refurbishment would begin at the Colonnade.

The venue became vacant at the end of October last year, when the lease of its previous occupant, Tea Beside the Sea, expired.

The district council chose not to renew the cafe’s lease after a cabinet decision to put a long-term lease out to bidders.

At the time, the council was criticised for the move by Tea Beside the Sea owner Janet Van of Den Busshce, who said she was not given enough time to wind up her business.

In January, after the prospective tenant for the Colonnade pulled out, the council’s cabinet agreed instead to run the eatery in-house.

To keep up-to-date visit bexhillcolonnade.co.uk.