The History Of The Rainbow Cafe
In the mid 70’s the elderly struggled to make ends meet on the basic state pension. Going out was one way of overcoming the loneliness that many experienced but they lacked an affordable venue in Camberley. The Rotary club set out to provide a Tea Room, a welcoming affordable place for people to rest up and meet friends when they came out to shop. They could enjoy an affordable cup of tea with a biscuit served by a team of friendly volunteers. Many friendships were established.
The first Tea room was a Portakabin positioned in Princess Way and later it moved to Obelisk Way. Encouraged by the Tea Room’s success, the club went out on a fund raising mission and gathered in £10,000 to have a purpose built Tea room situated in the Town Square. It was built, at cost, by the late Charles Church.
When the Town centre was roofed in, the Tea Room moved into Cambridge Square opposite the Army and Navy entrance in the Mall and you guessed right it moved again!
Today, nearly 50 years on the Tea room is now ideally located in Albert Road, near to the Main square and close to the main Bus stops and Railway Station.
The Tea Room was renamed The Rainbow Café and has extended its menu but essentially it is still welcoming people, particularly the elderly, visiting Camberley town. It’s a community café, purpose built and provided by Borough Council, staffed by volunteers and managed by the independent charity Surrey Heath Age Concern.