The Botanist to start work on transforming Ipswich’s Old Post Office building

Published20th October 2021

Works are set to begin to fit-out the Old Post Office building on Ipswich’s Cornhill to make way for The Botanist restaurant.

Construction teams will start work on the interior fit-out this week, which will see the restaurant start to take shape and the brand’s unique décor come to life. The New World Trading Company, which owns The Botanist, hope to open the restaurant in mid-February 2022.

As part of their plans for the restaurant, they have also submitted an application for a pavement licence to allow them to have outdoor seating. The application includes a request for a main forecourt seating area at the front of the building and a row of tables and chairs down the side of the building on Princes Street.

In order to accommodate this, Ipswich Borough Council will be relocating the Princes Street market traders to new positions in front of and underneath Lloyds Arch and the lower part of Lloyds Avenue. Traders based at the Food Quarter on Giles Circus and Queen Street will remain in place.

The market will continue to trade four days a week – on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays – and the Lloyds Avenue Taxi Rank will be unaffected as the market stalls will be distanced away from the taxi turning point and set up will take place within the designated market area.

Natasha Waterfield, Chief Operating Officer for New World Trading Company, said: “We are delighted to bring The Botanist to Ipswich. We have been looking at the town for some time and we are really pleased to be able to find its home in such a unique and suitable setting. 

“We’re positive The Botanist will bring a unique vibe to the community, creating new job opportunities - in management, front of house and kitchen - whilst cultivating a secret garden of food and drink that can be explored and enjoyed by all. We can’t wait to welcome you.”

Cllr Sarah Barber, Ipswich Borough Council’s portfolio holder for the town centre, said: “Having The Botanist occupy one of Ipswich’s landmark buildings is fantastic for the town and helps in our goal of making Ipswich a destination for people to visit. We’re pleased that work will soon be starting to get this stunning venue ready for opening and are excited about the outdoor seating which will give visitors an opportunity to sit out and enjoy great food in a great location right at the heart of the town centre.

“While we welcome these plans, Ipswich Market plays an important role in the identity of the town and we have thought carefully about the impact this would have on traders. We have consulted with traders on the plans and they are extremely positive about the move and are looking forward to trading in the new location.”

Mike Young, owner of Youngs Fish, said: “We are very excited about the move and the prime positioning of the stall, this is a great celebration of 40 years of trading for Youngs Fish.”

Micky Catchpole, owner of Catchey’s Fruit and Veg, said: “We are very happy about the move and thrilled with the new positioning, we can’t wait to get started with the new layout.”

Image caption left to right (Credit - IBC):

  • Cllr Sarah Barber, Ipswich Borough Council portfolio holder for the town centre
  • James McGregor, Assistant Development Manager at New World Trading Company
  • Stuart MacDonald, Head of Property at Ipswich Borough Council
  • Amber Sacco, Company Designer at New World Trading Company