Papworth Printworks

As residents of Papworth may have noticed, demolition work has started to clear the site of the former Papworth Printworks leaving the parts of the building that are structurally sound.

At this stage it means that Allia can start the process of establishing how best to deliver this new resource and building for the village of Papworth.

What is proposal for the former Papworth Printworks?

The proposal as stated in the Section 106 agreement in the Planning Consent is to accommodate a “brewhouse, bakery, floor area for the consumption of food and drink and community room or such community facilities or social enterprise as are agreed in writing with the Council”.

Why was it approved as a microbrewery, bakery with community use?

The original case for a Papworth microbrewery and pizzeria emerged in part due to the likely business opportunity and potential social benefit to the village including:

  • A reported need for social and community space, particularly to address the absence of a pub in the village at the time, although Rocky’s Restaurant and Bar has since opened.
  • A reported need for an evening food offering.
  • Lack of space for community use (at the time the village hall have not been refurbished)
  • The lower duty charged on microbreweries. Microbrewers who brew no more than 5,000 hectolitres of beer annually, pay 50% of the rate of beer duty. This means that quality beers can be sold to customers or wholesale which should be a huge help in the financial feasibility of the old Printworks microbrewery.
  • Baking artisan pizzas is an increasingly popular and established ‘BrewPub’ model (e.g.cratebrewery.com) and, if done well, hopefully a popular draw to the local community and visitors.
  • The creation of local employment opportunities both in the microbrewery and the bakery/pizzeria.
  • A venue and experience that creates a sense of camaraderie and rootedness in Papworth – local beers brewed by and for local people.

What is Flagship Group’s role?

Flagship Group is a housing developer that will be bringing new homes and community facilities to Papworth Everard.

They will be transforming the area of derelict land between Church Lane and Ermine Road South, into 66 homes – including nine affordable homes – and the former printworks building facility for Allia to establish a brewhouse, bakery and community rooms.

Flagship have started the demolition work to clear the site of the Papworth Printworks leaving the parts of the building that are structurally sound.

Around May 2017 they will start work on refurbishing the shell of the building which should take 3 or 4 months.  Once this work is completed and the building is watertight, and before sales of the housing to be built off Church Lane can commence, Flagship must offer the freehold to Allia for the purpose of accommodating a “brewhouse, bakery, floor area for the consumption of food and drink and community room or such community facilities or social enterprise as are agreed in writing with the Council”.

What is Allia’s role?

Allia is a Cambridge-based social enterprise dedicated to helping people, communities and organisations make positive social impact through enterprise and entrepreneurship.  We do this through providing access to finance and providing business support and workspace. We also bring this expertise to catalyse projects that we believe can make a difference to local areas.  The potential to convert a derelict, historic building into an attractive and useful resource for the community of Papworth and in the process create a sustainable venture with the opportunity for some new local jobs is what attracted us to this project, which is why we are investing our time and efforts to get this up and running.

Who is paying for the work to the building?

Flagship Group are making the building structurally sound and paying the costs of creating a watertight building.  Allia will need to invest in turning the building into an attractive and usable working space.

Does the village need a bakery?

We would be interested to know whether residents feel Papworth needs a bakery at the old Printworks. As an alternative to a traditional bakery, an artisan pizzeria is an excellent complement to the BrewPub model and could be an attractive addition to the food offer already available in Papworth. According to UK research in 2014 more than two thirds of UK consumers eat pizza at least once a month with one quarter eating pizza once a week or more which could improve the sustainability of the venture.

Why does the village need a microbrewery?

While the traditional pub model is in the decline with many pubs closing, microbreweries and the consumption of craft beers are both on the increase with many microbreweries and BrewPubs being a destination for people to visit. Not only could a microbrewery and BrewPub be an attractive venue for residents, but it has the potential to draw customers from beyond the village.

The old Printworks site has sufficient space to provide further opportunities for residents and the community to enjoy.  Which, if any, of these possible suggestions would residents be interested in? Some of the suggested uses are:

  • A co-working space for people who work from home or are starting a new business. The space could provide fast wi-fi and quality printing and copying, a chance to meet and network with others – not to mention a good cup of coffee and slice of pizza.
  • A space to support the creation and promotion of artisan skills and crafts, which could also be open to the public.
  • Upcycling of clothes, furniture and other items – a dress exchange / nearly new / second hand.
  • A place to display some of the historic pieces in the archives of the Papworth Trust.
  • A local cinema facility (http://sawstoncinema.org.uk/ or http://saffronscreen.com/)

We would welcome your views on how residents would like to make best use of this community space to complement but not duplicate what is already available at the Village Hall.

When will the building be open?

At this early stage it is difficult to be certain as it is dependent on a number of factors.  We will update residents at regular intervals as the proposal develops.

Have your say

We are keen to hear from residents about the proposal. You can email your views, questions and ideas to papworth@allia.org.uk.  In May we are planning to hold an event to bring people up to date with progress and give them the opportunity to discuss the plans and proposals.

We will publish email updates on the proposal at regular stages.  Please email papworth@allia.org.uk if you would like receive this email.