The Canbury Secret Story
The aim of the Canbury Secret project was to regenerate a derelict toilet block, out of use since 1984, decaying and attracting antisocial activity, and convert it into a seasonal café serving high quality refreshments and fine foods. The site of the disused toilet block near the bandstand was a blot on the landscape and the Canbury Secret development has provided a welcomed uplift.
The proprietor, Filippo Selini and his wife who live close to Canbury Gardens and visit regular basis, realised that there was a lack of refreshments for the increasing population frequenting the gardens.
“We have a passion for Italian coffee and fine, Italian style fresh food and want to make a difference in our community. We aim to create a home-away-from-home atmosphere and as well as using premium, specialist, Italian suppliers, we support local and independent partners when sourcing our products. Breathing new life into the old toilet building benefits the local community, as it is a sustainable, independent, local business generating employment for local people and lease income for the council. Rather than being an eyesore and a ‘dark, secret corner’ of Canbury Gardens, which has provided a secluded spot for antisocial behaviour, it is now a smart, safe area to enjoy refreshments and socialise.”