Restaurant revamp set to improve customer experience

The Galley in Woodbridge

The Galley in Woodbridge is hoping to secure consent for alterations - owner Ugur Vata at the restaurant - Credit: SARAH LUCY BROWN

One of Woodbridge's best-known restaurants is set to be expanded to enhance the experience for diners and improve working areas for staff.

The work at The Galley will see internal and external alterations, including creation of a link extension and conversion of public toilets to become part of the restaurant premises - with new public toilets built for the town.

Owner Ugur Vata has applied to East Suffolk Council for permission to carry out the work at the venue on Market Hill.

Owner of The Galley Ugur Vatar. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Owner of The Galley Ugur Vata - Credit: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Plaice Design said : "The proposed works will improve the layout of the restaurant, improve security for the business, help to reduce the potential for crime/anti-social behaviour in the area and will expand the offering The Galley Restaurant is able to provide. 

"The creation of two new public toilets will include a fully accessible toilet, something which is sadly missing at the moment and although only two replacement toilets are proposed - it is important to note that the existing facilities are seldom used and attract anti-social behaviour. 

"During these difficult and unprecedented times, it is commendable that a restauranteur is seeking to expand, instead of downsizing, or closing altogether."

Plaice Design Co Ltd, for The Galley, said the kitchen space, staff circulation and storage space was limited and had become too compact for an efficient working restaurant. Currently, it could only accommodate two small toilets not suitable for disabled customers.

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The public toilets at the rear of the premises also had a detrimental effect on the quality of life in the area.

Plaice Design said: "Unfortunately, the public toilets and surrounding land is regularly subject to anti-social behaviour, including drug misuse, partly as a result of its secluded location. The Galley has suffered a number of break-ins and robberies over recent years, with access largely being gained to the rear of the public toilets over the boundary wall."

The Galley, an early 17th century Grade II-listed three-storey building, has been a restaurant since 1973, and was previously a shop.

The proposed works will involve a rear extension, linking the existing building and the proposed production kitchen, along with internal alterations including new restaurant toilets with baby changing facilities, staff room and office. New public toilets would be built on Theatre Street.

The new production kitchen would be away from the busy serving kitchen within the existing building, for food preparation and demonstrations. 

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