Role Play Rascals in Stone Street Faversham offering gift vouchers during coronavirus lockdown
A much anticipated new play centre, which was only open two days before being forced to close because of the coronavirus outbreak, is trying to find ways to keep itself afloat during the lockdown.
Mum-of-three Hayley Gatward had spent months planning and preparing to launch Role Play Rascals in Faversham which was opened officially on March 21.
But the role play centre, which enables children to dress up and immerse themselves in both real-life scenarios and imaginary worlds, was only able to trial a small handful of sessions and host her own son's fourth birthday for family before the new business had to close its doors to customers along with thousands of other firms in Kent.
Hayley explained: "It has been an incredibly hard time for us after all the hard work we put in and the excitement during the build up to the opening, for us to then not be able to open.
"It's such a shame as the centre is sitting there all ready to go."
Hayley took over the former Allegro Dance Studio in Stone Street, kitting out the 1200sq ft site with themed areas that included a supermarket, car garage, moon landing, superheroes lair and a unicorn meadow.
Refurbishment work was also completed to create new toilets and disabled facilities for visitors as well as work to the kitchen to enable Role Play Rascals to serve hot and cold drinks and snacks to families visiting for scheduled play sessions.
The company had also taken a number of bookings for private functions and children's birthday parties - both of which it was offering for periods of exclusive hire.
In an attempt to maintain the community's interest in Role Play Rascals whilst also generating a small amount of income until the attraction can open, Hayley has designed two vouchers for sessions anyone wishing to support the new venture can buy in advance.
A '3 for 10' gives families three sessions valid on any day for £10 whilst a saver pass for £30 a child gives unlimited visits during the summer holidays. If government guidelines do not allow for Role Play Rascals to reopen over that period of time the pass would be valid for any six-week period after the centre can open.
To learn more about Role Play Rascals or to buy a voucher please visit www.roleplayrascals.com