Minnies Tearoom in Great Dunmow High Street hopes to re-open this weekend after flood

Rachael Greetham and Nick Clark, owners of Minnies Tearoom in Great Dunmow. Picture: CLAIRE BIRCH

Rachael Greetham and Nick Clark, owners of Minnies Tearoom in Great Dunmow. Picture: CLAIRE BIRCH - Credit: Archant

Cafe owners in Great Dunmow forced to temporarily close after a flood are reassuring customers they hope to be back open this weekend.

Rachael Greetham and Nick Clark, owners of Minnies Tearoom in the High Street, awoke on Sunday morning to find their basement was under a foot-and-a-half of water.

The flood had been caused by a failed connector which linked the water mains with the tearoom’s barista coffee machine.

The couple, both 32, opened the child-friendly tearoom in May 2017 having come up with the idea while Rachael was on maternity leave with their son Jacob – now two – and said they have already had great support from the town.

Rachael said: “We live on the premises and on Sunday morning I could hear what sounded like a water tap running.

“We discovered about a centimetre of water around the coffee machine, but unfortunately the water had travelled down to the basement and there was a foot-and-a-half of water.

“People had said this building used to flood before with rainwater, but we have worked very hard to fix that with improved drainage and so forth so we don’t get that anymore.

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“This was just bad luck.

“Since then we have been busy pumping the water out, dehumidifying in there and drying everything out.

“Luckily nothing sentimental has been lost and everyone is OK.”

The cafe was forced to close as the flood interrupted the power supply, meaning all of the stock had to be replaced, along with one fridge and the dishwasher.

“We’re just trying as quickly as possible to get back up and running again,” Rachael added.

It is hoped the cafe will be open at the weekend, but customers should check the firm’s Facebook page for the latest updates.

The tearoom was born out of a perceived gap in the market as Rachael met up with other new mum friends.

“There’s a lot of soft play places and a lot of lovely tearooms, but none really focus on keeping kids entertained and that play experience, as well as offering food,” she explained.

“The idea here is to provide a place for the entire family to relax and enjoy, and the children have time to play. Mums, dads, grandparents, can enjoy food – we know what it’s like when a two-year-old wants to get out of their high chair.”

Minnies Tearoom has a soft play area inside, plus an outdoor play zone, a marquee and a summerhouse with a play kitchen, toys and books, as well as a climbing frame.

It also does parties for various occasions.