7 March 2022

A museum café is set for a fresh start and a new role providing work experience for people with learning disabilities.

The café at The Brickworks Museum in Bursledon has been taken on by Minstead Trust, an experienced café operator and a charity that supports more than 220 people with learning disabilities across Hampshire and Portsmouth.

The business will be named ‘Brickyard Café’ and will be open from mid-April, Tuesday to Sunday from 10am until 4pm.

A selection of homemade light lunches, cakes and barista coffee will be on offer for visitors, as well as a children’s play area and renovated premises.

The café will provide training in customer service and catering for people with learning disabilities, who will also help produce the homemade cakes to be sold on site. A structured training programme will help people work towards employment, to enable them to live more independent lives.

The agreement also sees Minstead Trust setting up Brickyard Events at the museum, to run weddings, events and performances at the atmospheric venue. The events business will formally launch in the summer, when bookings for events and weddings will open.

Adam Dodd, Minstead Trust Chief Executive, said: ‘We are really pleased to be setting up this café and events business at The Brickworks Museum.

‘Increasing work training opportunities for people with learning disabilities is at the core of our mission. Having a job helps people to build their self-worth, feel pride in their endeavours and ultimately live more independent lives.

‘We are looking forward to working in conjunction with the team at the museum to offer great quality refreshments to their visitors, who I hope will relish the difference their custom is making for people with learning disabilities.’

Carolyne Haynes, Museum Director, said: ‘The Brickworks Museum are very excited that Minstead Trust are taking over the running of the café and using the museum as a venue for events. We see so many opportunities for both charities by working together in this way and can’t wait to get started.’

Paul West, Treasurer of Bursledon Brickworks Museum Trust, said: ‘We look forward to the Brickworks Museum having a lasting relationship with Minstead Trust and allow many more people to see the exciting benefits of this collaboration.

‘We anticipate that the revitalised café will attract new custom in addition to our regular visitors, and we are really pleased that it will offer work and opportunities to those needing special support in their lives which extends the existing such ethos of the museum.’

Minstead Trust supports people with learning disabilities through supported living accommodation, day opportunities and community groups. The Trust runs five social businesses to provide supported work experience and training.

Find out more about The Brickworks Museum at www.thebrickworksmuseum.org

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