Excitement over new play cafe for parents and children in Haywards Heath
Two women have drawn a huge interest for a cafe they are opening in Haywards Heath which is fitted with play areas suitable for young children and babies.
Lisa Baker, 35, and her cousin Jo Orton, 42, who are both single mums from Burgess Hill, will open J J’s Play Cafe on Sussex Road soon.
Ms Baker said: “We’re very excited. There’s nothing in the local area like it. There is an abundance of café’s but no sandwich bars or anywhere with activities for children and babies.”
There is a play frame suitable for under 8’s, where children can be accompanied by adults, whilst parents with babies are also encouraged to attend and make use of the baby play area.
She said: “Normally babies get left out of places like this. We also have a breast feeding room where parents can feel comfortable to bring their babies and have a relaxing time.
“As a parent you’re afraid your baby will start crying and all of the other ‘normal’ customers will be staring at you.”
The name J J’s Play Cafe is inspired by Ms Baker’s 16-month-old son, James, and Ms Orton’s 3-year-old son, Josh, who feature on the advert displayed in its window.
Ms Baker said: “They are our two shining lights. As well as a business, we wanted to make the play café because we don’t have anything like it to take them to.”
The J J’s Play Cafe Facebook page already boasts 919 likes despite the poster being their only advertising outlet.
J J’s was planned to open in September, when Ms Baker was made redundant at the end of her maternity leave after 13 years at Lloyds Bank as a Financial Investment Advisor.
It was delayed until after Christmas by recent storms, which caused leaking in the building.
Ms Baker said: “It would have been nice if it was ready by then, to just glide into a new career path, but it’s a small delay in the big picture.”
The capacity of the play frame is 40 children but Ms Baker said she will not allow it to become overcrowded.
She said: “It’s for enjoyment, not just to fill up. We’re also going to have tea, biscuits, milkshakes and Mr Whippy ice cream.”
There will also be a party room which will provide games and party activities.