Strichen’s ‘Jewel in the crown’ opens for business

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The ‘jewel in the crown’ for Strichen Community Park, the renovated Lodge House will be open for business as a coffee shop and restaurant on Tuesday, May 31 creating employment opportunities locally.

The renovated lodge house transformed into a coffee shop and restaurant will provide local employment in the hospitality industry, creating two full-time positions, three part-time positions and opportunities for many local students to gain valuable work experience.

The coffee shop and restaurant will be run on a day-to-day basis by leasee, Joanna Mccallum, who brings with her a wealth of experience from the hospitality industry, from events co-ordinator at the Black Isles Show and Ackergill Tower exclusive use castle to the 5-star Dorchester Hotel in London.

Commenting on her new venture Joanna said: “I am very excited, I have always had a particular interest in the catering side of the hospitality industry and feel very lucky to be involved with Strichen Community Park Company and such a capable and experienced committee, who have created this fantastic opportunity bringing a valuable asset to the community.”

Without divulging details of her new employees, Joanna added: “I am delighted with the talent I have managed to recruit locally, they will be able to provide mouth-watering dishes and a first class service.”

The work to renovate the derelict Lodge House commenced three months ago however the vision for the future of Strichen Community Park was born 17 years ago in 1994 when the Strichen Community Park Company was incorporated.

Peggy D’Inverno, treasurer of Strichen Community Park Company said: “I believe the Lodge house will be the jewel in the crown of the vision for Strichen Community Park.”

The Lodge coffee shop and restaurant will be open from 9am until 5pm Tuesday to Sunday from May 31.

However there will be an official grand opening ceremony in June with the First Minister, Alex Salmond in attendance.