19 August, 2021

Playground and café opening in Ellington Park 

The Ellington Park restoration project is nearing completion. The bandstand is being unveiled, the new café, run by the Friends of Ellington Park is open for a trial period and training and the new playground opens this week (w/c Monday 16 August 2021). 

About the new café

Located centrally on the terrace, the Ellington Café is a modern single story building with knapped flint panels to coordinate with the original flint on the terrace wall. The main space has an indoor seating capacity of 36 and has been designed to be a flexible multi-purpose space with hidden storage and sink for workshops and events. Thanet District Council and the Friends of Ellington Park ensured the café was designed with energy efficiency as a priority. The recent Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) gave an ‘A Rating’ for the building, with a 36% reduction in CO2 emissions compared to the building regulations target value. Potential over heating from solar gain is between 57.2% and 95.7% lower than building regulations target. Overall from the government’s records for efficiency ratings since 2009, the Ellington Café’s rating is within the top 1.7% of  England’s 922,170 non-domestic buildings. 

Beverly Perkins, Chair of Friends of Ellington Park said “Achieving such an ecologically successful design for the café is a great credit to everyone involved – The Design Team, Thanet District Council, and the Friends. To continue this ethos, the café will source food and drinks locally and operate no plastic and limited waste policies.” 

About the new play area

Local children, and their parents, will be excited to learn that the new playground is opening this week (w/c Monday 16 August). The wooden balancing beams, seesaw, climbing frames, swings and climbing rocks will be available for all to enjoy. The play area has been designed with natural sustainable materials which are in keeping with the landscape and ethos of the park. The old play area will be removed and some items reused (where possible) across the district. 

About the restored bandstand

The 120 year old Victorian bandstand (Macfarlane pattern number 279) was restored by specialists Lost Art and kept under wraps until the major work of the café and landscape had been completed, to prevent damage. 

Cllr George Kup, Cabinet Member for Community Safety and Youth Engagement at Thanet District Council said: “The regeneration of Ellington Park has been a long-term project and it is wonderful to see all of the plans coming to fruition. It has been exciting to see all of the changes and the great work that can be achieved through strong community partnerships. The new café and updated playground reflect the desire of the local residents who were consulted on these plans from the outset. The bandstand provides a wonderful focal point for the park and it is really exciting to see such an iconic feature within Ellington Park restored to its former glory. This is a major milestone in the park’s regeneration journey.“

The remaining landscape works will continue for another couple of months, and include new heritage stone balustrades, boundary fencing, planting, interpretation features, new website and signs. The café will continue to operate during this period, and some events will be taking place.

For more information on the Ellington Park restoration project please see thanet.gov.uk/ellington-park-regeneration-scheme/

Exterior of the Ellington Cafe -
Ellington Cafe – photograph by Carlos Dominguez, Thanet Property Photography
Wooden swing bridge in children's play area
New play area 


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