TV star Jay Blades in Telford to open refurbished cafe

By Matthew Growcott | Ironbridge | Dining out | Published:

Designer and television presenter Jay Blades travelled to the Ironbridge Gorge to officially open a recently refurbished cafe.

Jay Blades from Telford who hosts the BBC programme Money for Nothing and The Repair Shop has visited the Maws Craft Centre, to open the new cafe area and to look at the new business starter spaces. Jay in the refurbished cafe with Mayor Raj Mehta.

The Repair Shop and Money for Nothing Host was opening the Tile Press cafe at Maws, which was taken over in July by Maws Trading Ltd as part of plan to re-invigorate and re-launch the venue as a creative hub for Shropshire.

Bosses said they hoped to create a place where amateurs and professionals alike can come together to make things, meet people, work on projects, shop, sell or share skills.

Peter Townend, Maws chairman, said: "When we took on the cafe in July, it was the height of the busy summer season so it was all hands-on deck to get it open.

“Although we carried out some basic refurbishments, we had some ambitious plans for the space and knew we would have to wait until a quieter time so we could close and tackle it properly.”

In addition to refurbishing the café, the Maws team have also been busy creating new shared work spaces for creative businesses which are just starting out.

Sabine Townend, managing director at Maws, said: "“We call them ‘Starter Spaces’. These are small pod-like units within a large shared space which come complete with catering facilities, a shop window and dedicated area for artists to work on larger projects or run their own classes. They are already proving extremely popular with local start-ups, as the cost, is within reach and enables them to grow their businesses in a safe, supportive environment.”

Both the new-look café and starter spaces will be officially opened by Jay on Sunday.

“We were thrilled that Jay agreed to officially open the café for us”, said Sabine. “Over the past year or so he has been incredibly supportive of our plans and has really helped us focus our efforts. We would therefore like to take this opportunity to thank him and everyone else who has helped us make this happen"

Matthew Growcott

By Matthew Growcott
Reporter - @MGrowcott_Star

Shropshire Star reporter


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