Not-for-Profit Cafe Opens
for Deaf & Community In Ipswich

Mayor of Ipswich Councillor Jane Riley cuts commemorative cake with IDS Chair Alison Berry

Mayor of Ipswich Councillor Jane Riley cuts commemorative cake with IDS Chair Alison Berry

Ipswich based charity The Ipswich Deaf Society had their coffee bar for the Deaf and general community officially opened by The Mayor of Ipswich, Councillor Jane Riley on Saturday 6th April.

The charity which has recently undergone a change in its board of trustees exists to promote independence and supports deaf and heard of hearing people to participate actively in society,

Dean Wales, Communications Officer for the charity said: "We've run informal coffee mornings at the Deaf Centre in Wharfedale Road for some time but wanted to take it on to a new level and thought a full on coffee bar for the deaf would fit in nicely with today's cafe culture."

Aptly named 'The Wharfe', the coffee bar is located in the charity's head office in Suffolk House in Wharfedale Road in Ipswich. Currently open on Wednesday mornings the coffee bar is run by members of the board of trustees who are either deaf themselves or are hearing but are competent BSL (British Sign Language) signers. Wales said: "Although the coffee bar has been primarily set up for the Deaf and hard of hearing community we want to make everyone and anyone welcome." He added: "By making it open to the community as a whole leads to better integration for the Deaf community and helps grow Deaf awareness amongst society as a whole." 

Although currently open Wednesday mornings the Charity is hoping to increase the days and times the coffee is bar is open and the events that are held there and urge those interested to visit  The Wharfe Coffee Bar Facebook page for full details and forthcoming events.

Mingling and socialising with members of the deaf community, the Mayor of Ipswich enjoyed a tour of the Charity's offices, function rooms and social club before officially opening the coffee bar with a ribbon cutting ceremony. Staying on to partake in refreshments The Mayor, Councillor Jane Riley offered to cut the cake marking the event with the Ipswich Deaf Society's Board of Trustees Chair Alison Berry.

Wales said: "The coffee bar is the first major step in improving the provision of events, activities and facilities at the centre and I ask for people to look out for our fundraising events in the future to help us better meet the needs of the deaf and hard of hearing in and around Ipswich."

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