There is an intriguing pre-fabricated building in Lincoln’s Inn Fields, the former Terrace Restaurant. It has a chequered history – the act of Parliament governning the Fields bans buildings that aren’t in connection with the ‘convenient use and maintenance’ of the Fields. The Terrace was an ok-ish destination restaurant – ie not intended for people using the Fields. ‘Convenient use’ would seem to mean selling drinks and snacks to park-goers, not three course meals. Trade seemed to fall off and there was a lease problem with the Council and the restaurant stopped trading.
The Friends have encouraged the council to re-let the building, which has been empty for some time. But to do so in a way that is useful for people in the park – either vending drinks and snacks or offering educational services. The council have worked hard on the invitation to tender which is below and includes provision of snacks, which is good. Interesting points are:
There must be no minimum order value or restrictions such as main meals only at a certain period of the day.
A range of hot and cold beverages and snacks, as well as a takeaway service must be available whilst the refreshment facility is open.
The building is to be used for providing an A3 café/ restaurant as per planning permission.
When the refreshment facility is open there must be a takeaway service offered.
The lease is due to start on 20 April so hopefully it will be open this summer. It’s a ten year lease with a five year break clause. Would be interesting to hear other’s views on the tender.