Cafe bids to be culture hotspot

Pictured in the Legenderry Warehouse Cafe are, from left, Gavin Killeen, Alan McClure, manager Michael McLaughlin and Karen Desmond. (1112PG56)
Pictured in the Legenderry Warehouse Cafe are, from left, Gavin Killeen, Alan McClure, manager Michael McLaughlin and Karen Desmond. (1112PG56)

A new Derry cafe is bidding to become a City of Culture hotspot.

Legenderry Warehouse No 1, at 1-3 Guildhall Street, is an officially licensed seller of City of Culture memorabilia and is billed by its owners as the best place to find out what’s going on in the City of Culture for 2013.

Co-founder, Managing Director of Nuprint Technologies, Gavin Killeen, explained that the idea for the coffee house emerged when local business people got together to get involved in the City of Culture year.

Mr Killeen teamed up with Karen Duncan, owner of art and design company Bang On The Door, and Donal Doherty of Harry’s Restaurant in Bridgend - in a premises owned by local serial entrepreneur Alan McClure - to get the memorabilia coffee house up and running.

The centrally located coffee shop first opened its doors to the public last weekend.

“It started off as an idea for a coffee shop selling memorabilia but it’s now much more than that. The premises was closed and being used as a warehouse and Alan McClure suggested it would be the perfect location to do something for the City of Culture year.

“Legenderry Warehouse No 1 will be a place where people can come and find out all about Derry as the City of Culture. We have also been granted a licence to sell official City of Culture memorabilia and will have a shop dedicated to that next door. The shop will sell memorabilia about Derry and events in Derry while also trying to help local artists and craft workers sell their work,” he added.

Mr Killeen said that there are high ambitions for the venture. “We may even end up having similar cultural coffee shops in Belfast and even London and New York, who knows”.

Ms Duncan explained that Derry’s cultural identity will be at the heart of the new venture.

“We want people to come in and get a feel for the locality of Derry and what it’s truly about. And this is only the beginning.

“We’ll be opening a retail space next door, for City Of Culture merchandise, a lot of local craft, local art, local photography and all sorts of things.

“More than that, we are aiming to have a presence at the big events going on throughout the year, so that people can buy Legenderry coffee there too.”