New plans could see station buffet make a return to Huntingdon

Huntingdon railway station. Picture: ARCHANT

Huntingdon railway station. Picture: ARCHANT - Credit: Archant

The buffet at Huntingdon railway station is set to be brought back to life nearly two years after it closed its doors - run by a local independent coffee shop.

Tony Ellul and his mother Annette closed the doors to the Station Buffet in 2017. Picture: ARCHANT

Tony Ellul and his mother Annette closed the doors to the Station Buffet in 2017. Picture: ARCHANT - Credit: Archant

Train operator Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) has launched plans to carry out work at the Grade-II listed station - which it is funding with the Railway Heritage Trust.

The work could also lead to a very short trip to a train for a keen passenger because residential accommodation at the former station house will also be let.

The buffet and newsagents shut in 2017 on the retirement of the Ellul family who had run it as an independent family business for 40 years.

Now GTR has applied to carry out external and internal alterations, including openings and windows, and the move is being considered by planners at Huntingdonshire District Council.

A GTR spokesman said: "These new lettings should be a great addition to our listed station, offering new benefit to passengers.

"The commercial letting will be to a local independent coffee shop who will be submitting their own application for listed building consent for internal renovations and plans to start their fit out in the autumn. We will be announcing who this is in due course."

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The spokesman added that the residential letting would start once the application had been approved by the council.

The former station house includes the buffet and separate residential accommodation.

In its application, GTR said: "The proposal includes adjusting the use of a small part of the building from residential to commercial, an additional opening through the existing waiting area to the buffet area and adjusting a gate adjacent to the property to make it suitable for pedestrian access.

"The works are intended to facilitate the separation between the commercial and residential aspects of the former station house so both units can be rented out for their intended use separately."

GTR envisages that the upgraded building will have two full time and two part-time employees.

It said the timber-framed windows would be finished in white and that the two doors planned would be timber panelled, one with a window, and would be finished in black.

The buffet and newsagents closed in August 2017.