Let us introduce you to Basil.
You know Thor, the Thunder God? Well, he has a lesser known British cousin who goes by the name of Basil. He's the God of light drizzle.
We think he looks a bit like this.
Why do we like him?
Well, when it's hot and sunny, sadly we have no roof terrace (yet!) so the cafe is quiet as everyone want to be in the sunshine. When it's very rainy, like today, the cafe is equally quiet because nobody in their right mind would venture out if they didn't have to.
When it's quiet, our volunteers and staff get a bit bored and resort to inventing new hot chocolate flavours (so the day is not entirely wasted).
Basil is the God of light drizzle and grey cloud. The kind of day where you will venture out, but after a little while you'll start thinking 'I could use a cup of tea right now, I think I'll visit The Art House'.
Now, you know we don't focus on money - far from it - but one thing we can't forget is that it costs us around £400 per day to run The Art House. Yes, that is a lot! That money goes on rent, council tax, bills, licence fees, insurances, buying supplies, fixing things that break. Just around 17% of it goes to paying staff. We also have to pay VAT to Mr Taxman. So a till that looks a bit empty at the end of the day....well... that's not a good thing either.
All of the money that keeps us afloat, all year round, comes from YOU - our customers. We think of ourselves as a tea-and-cake-powered arts venue. We have no external funders, no magic pot of cash, to it's a hand-to-mouth existence. Lots of people drinking tea, or enjoying a yummy lunch, not only makes us happy and justifies why we are here - it also (on a less romantic level) - pays the bills.
So, we'd like to say a huge thanks to all of you who come in, rain or shine, and support us - because if you didn't come in and drink tea, well, we wouldn't be here.
And thanks to Basil, when he smiles on us and the cafe is full! In the meantime, we'll test the new shakes on hot days, and those hot chocolate flavours are coming along very well...... slurp.