Cuppa, a coffee shop based in Felixstowe, was recently gifted solar panels by DPL Group, construction company based in Ipswich who specialise in Electrical, Mechanical, Fire, Security and Renewable energy.
Café owner Sarah set up Cuppa four years ago and it soon became a hub for the local community. They use directly traded, organic coffee beans from a women’s co-operative and fair trade teas and have locally made fresh cakes and bread and loads of vegan and gluten free options. They also hold charity events like gigs and quizzes as well as having a book club.
Sarah comments; “Prior to opening Cuppa we ran Chuckles Fancy Dress, but due to people buying more online we had to close. I then had the idea of launching a community coffee shop, and this is how Cuppa was born! We often host evenings to raise money for local charities, and we have a pay-it-forward scheme which means people who may not be able to afford food/drinks can come in and our more fortunate customers have already paid for them.
“We unfortunately then found ourselves in need. The rising energy costs meant that our monthly electricity bill was going to triple, and this was not a cost that we would be able to cover and stay open. Initially, some of our loyal customers started a GoFundMe page to generate money for us to have solar panels installed, however I will never forget the call I received from Fran and Gary Dinsdale from the DPL Group who had been told about our dilemma by David Faichney one of our regular customers. I was in the bakery buying bread for the café when they called and said that they would donate and install the solar panels. I cried right there in the bakery. We wouldn’t have been able to stay open without their generosity”
Gary Dinsdale, Managing Director of DPL Group, comments; “When we heard about Sarah’s plight, and knew we had to do something to support this business which is in the heart of our local community. We have a solar division at DPL Group and the logical thing for us to do was to donate and install them for her. We live locally to the coffee shop so were very aware of the positive impact they have on our community, and the last thing we wanted was for them to have to close down.”
With the new solar panels in place, Cuppa can now continue to serve its community while embracing sustainable energy practices, thanks to the generous donation from DPL Group.