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Great Central Railway to close Greenacres cafe

The Great Central Railway is closing the Greenacres cafe which is close to its southern terminus at Leicester North station.

The decision has been taken after a review of its sustainability following a number of years of trading. Despite the determined efforts of staff, while the business units have been filled, the cafe has struggled to turn a profit. This is of course a concern for any business and for the Railway particularly, which is sustained substantially by charitable donations and the efforts of unpaid volunteers.

Director and General Manager of the Great Central Railway Michael Gough said, “This is a difficult decision and not one we have taken lightly. While the Greenacres cafe has proved to be popular with some visitors it has not attracted anywhere near enough custom to prove commercially viable. Following consultation with staff and Leicester City Council it will close “from the 1st of November.”

The Greenacres site is adjacent to the Leicester North terminus of the Great Central Railway. This is where Leicester City Council, the Great Central Railway and the National Railway Museum are collaborating to build a new railway museum. The project has been earmarked for £10m of National Lottery funding.

Michael continued, “The exciting museum project continues apace and we are currently planning for the doors to open in 2021. In the long term, as befits a major new visitor attraction for Leicester, we expect to be able to provide a new catering facility at the museum. Subject to further planning that may well include reopening Greenacres cafe.”

Visitors to the Great Central will still be able to purchase tickets and light refreshments at Leicester North station itself. The other units on the Greenacres site are not affected by the closure of the cafe and will continue to be home to local traders and businesses.