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Summer Eats in The Secret Garden

Written by Rachael Norris, 9th July 2020

‘I was overwhelmed by the names, the noise of the traffic, the voices, the colours, the festive atmosphere, the ease with which he brought me a pizza …’

Elena Ferrante - My Brilliant Friend.


There won’t be any traffic but we hope there will be voices and colours and atmosphere, and we know there will be pizza… 

After months of closure, the Mansion House is slowly re-emerging to serve the community at Calderstones once again. The silence and solitude of the last few months have been replaced by action and excitement as we’ve put our hearts and minds to the task of how best to answer the question asked by so many of you: ‘When can we come back?’.  

We cannot thank you all enough for the support that you have shown us in this time, particularly as we have begun to operate again. Profits from our social enterprises go directly to support our charitable work and the financial impact of closure has been a huge concern for The Reader, as it has for so many organisations across the city. Our staff are eager to get back to work so we can provide opportunities for our community to reconnect whilst generating vital income once more. 

While we’re still unable to welcome you back safely inside the building, our Calderstones team is working hard to plan how we can bring a range of community activities back to the park over the summer, from poetry walks to family experiences 

As a first step on the path towards this reimaginingwe’re pleased to let you know that we’ll be trialling Summer Eats in The Secret Garden - weekend al fresco dining for families and friends to reconnect in the private gardens of the Mansion House 

From this weekend, you’ll be able to share in the pleasure of relaxed outdoor eating with those close to you once againin socially-distanced dining plots with bench-seating and table service. We’ll be serving a specially crafted menu of homemade pizza, fresh salads and favourites like halloumi fries during the day and cheese boards from Liverpool Cheese Company on Saturdays from 6pm.

What you need to know 

Parties of up to 4 and 6 people are invited to pre-book tables online for a two-hour slot in our fully licensed private garden. Tables are available from 12 noon on both Saturday and Sundays throughout July and August. A £10 deposit is payable which will be deducted from the final bill.  

Some tables will be available for people without reservations on the day. Whether you've booked or not, in line with government advice we’ll be recording details of when your party arrives and leaves and will share this and relevant names and phone numbers with NHS Test and Trace if required. 

To ensure everyone’s safety, we’re implementing a number of new measures which you can read about here. We’re asking that all guests respect these measures as we all get used to this new way of working.   

Follow this link to reserve a table now.

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