- 30th Aug 2021
Tsukure Cafe was and still is our flagship project. The goal was to renovate the “Internet Cafe” into a creative and collaborative community space and coffee shop. Using almost entirely recycled materials found on site, the old space was transformed into Tsukure Cafe. The renovation took many months to complete and many hurdles had to be overcome in order for us to open.
A mere two weeks or so after opening our doors for the very first time in March 2020, the COVID19 pandemic began to take grip and the coffeeshop was forced to close it's doors to the public. At this time the prototyping department were developing PPE which later they mass produced and distributed to local authorities and charitable organisations.
It wasn't long after the closure, the doors were reopened and coffees once again being served from the coffee shop, take away only. A sense of normality was returned to the high street as more and more ventured out to get supplies from the town centre, grabbing a coffee on their way to queue at their chosen supermarket.
As time passed and restrictions lifted, the coffeeshop grew and eventually spawned the Asian Bubble Tea and Snack Bar.
In 2021, the coffeeshop and tea bar is one of the primary sources of income, it is the heart of the organisation.
The Story So Far...
It was now looking like the pandemic was getting under control and a vaccine was almost ready to combat any future risks so when we were asked if we would like a retro arcade machine for the cafe, we jumped at the chance.
During any quiet periods during the past months work around the building continued, including the decoration of the cafe with old jewellers receipts dating back to before the great wars.
No sooner had we opened as we were closed. COVID-19 was identified at the beginning of the year and rapidly spread across the globe forcing the country and most of the world into lock-down. Everywhere had to close.
Elsewhere in the complex, Tsukure Commercial were producing much needed PPE for front-line care workers. A call from a friend at the council then prompted for us open our cafe doors once more, with a little forethought we placed a table across the entrance and with the help of volunteers trained for the coffeeshop we began serving coffee and snacks from the door, wearing the same PPE we were producing for the NHS and other care based organisations.
That was it! We had opened our doors to the public and served our first posh coffee.
So close, yet so far! Having put all the work in to renovate the cafe, the coffee machine was unfortunately unusable. We had no other choice but to buy a second-hand one costing £2000.
Completely transformed, the cafe was really beginning to feel homely, especially when we positioned our comfy sofas, chairs and coffee tables ready for customers. We erected our laser cut light sign prototype and plumbed the coffee machine in ready for its service and overhaul.