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Community café in Inverness to be replaced by vending machines

By Andrew Dixon

FLASHBACK: The café at Hilton Community Centre supported the Archie appeal.
FLASHBACK: The café at Hilton Community Centre supported the Archie appeal.

A FAMILY-FRIENDLY café in an Inverness neighbourhood is to close – and be replaced by vending machines.

The Archie Café at Hilton Community Centre looked to have won a reprieve in January after being faced with closure at Christmas but High Life Highland has just announced it will close.

Following a review, the charity withdrew from the café in December and the following month Drumnadrochit-based catering company Cobbs decided to underwrite any costs while talks continued in a bid to secure its longer-term future.

Now High Life Highland says no viable operators have been found following a formal tendering exercise, adding it will therefore replace the existing service with "vending provision" from September 30.

A High Life Highland spokesman said: “We have followed every avenue to try and find a viable solution for the coffee shop service to remain open at Hilton Community Centre and High Life Highland would like to acknowledge the service provision by the operator during this period to ensure catering and refreshments continued to the users at the location.

"High Life Highland is in the process of arranging the installation of a vending operation to ensure that those customers still have a service provision, albeit on a reduced scale.”

Related article: Reprieve given to Hilton's lifeline community café

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