Popular cafe celebrates 30 years of serving the Harborough community

A well-liked church-run cafe in Market Harborough has celebrated its 30th anniversary.

Thursday, 21st November 2019, 12:41 pm
Updated Thursday, 21st November 2019, 12:44 pm
Photographtaken at the cafe 30th anniversary tea party, Left to right: Founding staff and volunteers, Hazel Mayher, Joyce Barrett, Muriel Tooms, Bernie Freestone and Jean Stanley with Rev Malcolm Barrett and Rev Christopher Brown.
Photographtaken at the cafe 30th anniversary tea party, Left to right: Founding staff and volunteers, Hazel Mayher, Joyce Barrett, Muriel Tooms, Bernie Freestone and Jean Stanley with Rev Malcolm Barrett and Rev Christopher Brown.

The New Horizons Café in Manor Walk staged a tea party for the founders, staff and volunteers.

The popular town centre meeting spot is part of Market Harborough Baptist Church in Coventry Road.

The Rev Malcolm Barrett, minister at the church when the cafe opened in 1989, said: "The church started Saturday coffee mornings in the lounge.

“But we wanted to do more to serve the community and see the area around the church improved.

“So we sold some land to enable Manor Walk and our cafe to be created, plus a second church hall which has been totally refurbished this year.”

The church owned the land that is now Manor Walk shopping arcade.

The church caretaker's house once stood alongside garages, a workshop and a right-of-way through to the back of County Electric Cinema on The Square - now the site of New Look.

Behind the church were also tennis courts and a garden.

Church member and historian Douglas Wooldridge said: "You could only see the front of the church on Coventry Road.

“There was no Manor Walk or entrance to the Commons Car Park."

The cafe now offers a new range of fresh coffees along with snacks, homemade sweet and savoury scones as well as a specials board with meals of the day.

There are Fair Trade goods, greeting and Christmas cards, calendars and advent candles. Opening hours are Monday to Friday 9.15am to 2.30pm.

New church minister the Rev Christopher Brown said: "One thing that has not changed is the care shown to our customers and the wonderful work of volunteers and staff over the years continuing with our present staff - Kay, Michelle and Denise.

“Thank you all for the way you so generously give your time, your hard work and your friendly welcome to each and every person who comes through the door.”

The decorated cafe will be taking part in Harborough’s popular annual Christmas Fayre on Friday December 6 at 6pm.

It will be transformed into a Christmas craft-making workshop for families.

Shops in Manor Walk are arranging for 'characters' from new Disney blockbuster Frozen II to be there and there'll be the Frozen Trail for children to spot images in the shop windows, ending at the New Horizons Cafe.