Cats Protection café forced to close after flooding

Cats Protection League. Chelwood Gate ENGSUS00120120210152856
Cats Protection League. Chelwood Gate ENGSUS00120120210152856

Cats Protection’s Visitor Centre café has been forced to temporarily close for refurbishment after it was flooded.

The café, part of the charity’s National Cat Centre in Lewes Road, Chelwood Gate, near Uckfield, was left with extensive water damage following the incident overnight on Thursday 17 September.

A leak from a water pipe is thought to have been the cause of the flood, which was confined to the Visitor Centre building and did not affect the neighbouring National Cat Adoption Centre, which houses cats waiting to find new owners.

Visitor Centre Manager Dee McDonald said staff were working hard to reopen the centre to the public as soon as possible.

She said: “The café and reception area were badly flooded and the floors will all need to be replaced as they are not safe. We had no choice but to close for the time being but will be doing all we can to reopen as soon as possible.

“It’s a sad sight at the moment, as our Visitor Centre is normally a bustling hive of activity, with all sorts of events going on and regular visitors popping in for tea and cake.

“Fortunately, our shop and kitchens were not affected, and we will be able to reopen the shop shortly. We are hoping that the damage to the café seating area and reception won’t take too long to repair.

“The cats in our care are housed in a separate building which was entirely unaffected, so they were all safe and dry.

“While the café is closed, the National Cat Adoption Centre is still very much open and ready to welcome anybody who would like to come and look – and hopefully offer a home – to one of the unwanted cats in our care.

“We’d like to apologise to the public for any inconvenience caused by the temporary closure of the Visitor Centre cafe and thank our regular customers for their patience and words of support.”

Anybody wishing to hear when the centre fully reopens can email to be kept informed of the progress.

Other buildings on the site remain unaffected and open. These include the charity’s administrative headquarters as well as the National Cat Adoption Centre, which currently has around 150 unwanted and abandoned cats looking for a new home.

To find out more about any of the cats currently at the National Cat Adoption Centre, please email

Alternatively, the centre is open to visitors seven days a week from 10am until 4pm. It is situated in Chelwood Gate, on the A275 between Wych Cross and Danehill.

To find using a SatNav, please use the postcode RH17 7DE, or for a map and directions please visit

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