Bognor railway station cafe owners fearful over £1.5m makeover plans

Tessa and Keith Moger-Waller fear they will be pushed out of Bognor Railway Station if �1.5m makeover is approved SUS-150729-115603001
Tessa and Keith Moger-Waller fear they will be pushed out of Bognor Railway Station if �1.5m makeover is approved SUS-150729-115603001

THE couple who run Nathan’s cafe fear they will be ‘pushed out’ of Bognor railway station if major regeneration plans go ahead.

Tessa and Keith Moger-Waller have also strongly defended their coffee after a survey purported that rail users’ wanted ‘somewhere to buy a good cup of coffee’ at the station.

Tessa said: “We met with an agent from TPT management consultancy on behalf of Southern Rail and she said Arun District Council don’t want us here.

“She said in a meeting the council said they want to put the lease out to tender because they think the cafe looks cheap and not in keeping with their vision of the future. It’s very upsetting and insulting.

“The cafe is called Nathan’s after our late son, it’s a memorial to him. We’ve put our heart and soul into it as well as all our money.”

As reported by the Observer, a planning application for a £1.5m overhaul of Bognor railway station has been submitted.

In a press release from Arun District Council announcing the news, it said that ‘Southern carried out a passenger survey to identify what people wanted most and by far the most popular requests were for a waiting room and somewhere to buy a good cup of coffee’ - a comment which has annoyed Tessa and Keith.

They have asked to see the survey for themselves and Keith said: “While our regular customers know our coffee is good, others reading what was written might assume it’s not.

“With all our prices we try to be affordable because we know how expensive days out are for families but that doesn’t mean the quality of what we serve isn’t good.”

The couple say they have worked hard to build up the business since taking over in April 2013, after the premises was left empty for three years and had gained a ‘bad reputation’.

Even if they are allowed to extend their lease and the major improvements go ahead, they say plans for an all-new restaurant and waiting area in the station would make it difficult for Nathan’s to survive.

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