A NEW café has opened its doors on Weymouth Esplanade - run by the town council.

Based at the Weymouth beach office and toilet facility, the new Prom Café is now open for business and will be selling a range of refreshments including teas, coffees, and ice creams using locally sourced produce.

Weymouth Town Council said jobs have been created with the venture, as the café will be run by one full time member of staff who will be supported by seasonal catering assistants - all of whom will be paid the ‘Real Living Wage’ instead of national minimum wage.

However the council’s decision to run a cafe in-house has been marred by controversy. It meant that the proprietor of a popular beach cafe, Aunty Vi’s, would not have an opportunity to renew his lease when it comes to an end next month - which was met by public outcry.

Weymouth town councillor Luke Wakeling revealed the council’s plans for the café over the coming season.

He said: “We’re delighted to open The Prom Café, which is located on Weymouth’s promenade, overlooking our award-winning sandy beach. We are initially offering teas, coffees, and ice creams, however the menu will be expanding over the coming weeks.

“Our food and drinks will be sourced as locally as possible, from suppliers including Café Rico, Jessica’s Farmhouse Cakes and Craigs Dairy.”

At the moment the café is open for takeaways only, in line with the national lockdown - but plans are being made so that customers can relax and soak up the sunshine when lockdown restrictions allow.

“When it’s possible, there will also be an outside seating area available for customers to enjoy views of the sheltered bay,” cllr Wakeling added.

“Our goal is to offer a year-round seafront service that works to benefit the whole community. We’ll reinvest all profits in projects and services that improve our local area for residents and visitors.”

According to the lockdown ‘roadmap’ announced by PM Boris Johnson on Monday, hospitality businesses will be allowed to serve customers outside from April 12.

The new café will be open every day from 10am – 4pm, depending on weather.

More information about the café will be available soon on the Weymouth Town Council website www.weymouthtowncouncil.gov.uk