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Structural report says Rose Garden Café is safe to open more fully

View of the outside of Rose Garden Cafe in Graves Park
Rose Garden Cafe in Graves Park

Structural engineers have confirmed that scaffolding, which is currently propping up the roof on the Rose Garden Café in Graves Park, can now be removed.

This means that the Rose Garden Café Partnership – a group that has been put together to take forward refurbishment and restoration works on the beloved community café – can now push forward plans to reopen the café’s internal seating area more fully.

In the meantime, an architect and design team will be appointed to further progress the restoration and refurbishment.

Although scaffolding propping the roof can be reduced, the structural engineer’s report has advised that support for the café’s front wall must remain in place and that the wall should eventually be taken down and rebuilt to ensure safe use of the building.

The Partnership has stated it was vital to establish the cause of the lean in order to progress with the restoration and refurbishment, as understanding how to stabilise the front wall was needed before funding can be applied for.

Councillor Richard Williams, Chair of the Charity Trustee Sub-committee at Sheffield City Council, said:

“I am delighted at the important progress that has been made towards the restoration and refurbishment of our beloved Rose Garden Café in Graves Park.

“We know how important this asset is to the local community, so to now be able to move forward with plans and soon reopen the café more fully to allow for seated customers, is great news.

“I would like to thank the Rose Garden Café Partnership for their continued commitment to this restoration and all they have achieved so far.”

Chris Hallam, Chair of the Rose Garden Café Partnership, commented:

“I am extremely proud of the work that’s been undertaken by the members of the Partnership to get to this significant milestone.

“It really shows what can be achieved when community organisations and Sheffield City Council agree to work together in different ways.”

The Partnership says their ‘priority is now to reopen the café’s internal seating and catering as soon as possible’.

Next steps will also include creating a cost plan for the full restoration and applying for funding.

Progress to date

Following a structural survey on the building in July 2022, the Rose Garden Café in Sheffield’s Graves Park was closed due to concerns about the building stability.

Since then, considerable steps have been taken to developing a strategy for the restoration and refurbishment of the building including the establishment of the Rose Garden Café Partnership, made up of representatives from Friends of Graves Park, Save the Rose Garden Café Campaign and Sheffield City Council.

More than 1500 residents have also been able to have their say on the restoration, thanks to a public consultation that took place in Spring. Feedback from the consultation will be used to complete the design brief for architects ahead of restoration works.

The Partnership also continue to fundraise to support work on the café, as other funding streams are explored. To date, they have raised more than £10,700 and continue to host fundraising walks and other activities to raise money. 

You can donate to the Rose Garden Café cause via the Friends of Graves Park Just Giving fundraising page and all the latest Partnership updates can be found on the Rose Garden Café Partnership Have Your Say Page.

Further updates will be presented to the Sheffield City Council Charity Trustee Sub-committee meeting on Tuesday 16th July 2024. The full report to committee can be found here.