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Sadness that riverside bar Othersyde is set to close in Cambridge - but new venture Alcademy is coming

Patrons of popular riverside bar Othersyde have expressed their dismay after learning the operators are leaving and moving to new premises after they were unable to extend a contract with their landlord.

Othersyde is riverside bar, cafe, and arts and escape game venue based at the Cambridge Museum of Technology in the Engineers’ House, a building on loan to the Museum of Technology by the city council.

Matthew Taylor, from The Othersyde bar, at the Museum of Technology. Picture: Keith Heppell
Matthew Taylor, from The Othersyde bar, at the Museum of Technology. Picture: Keith Heppell

The bar will close on September 30 and Calverley Brewery will be taking over the venue from October 1.

Many visitors have taken to social media to vent their anger and shock at the closure. But Othersyde has said it will reopen at a new venue on Mitcham’s corner called Alcademy.

In a statement on their Facebook page, Othersyde said: “It is with a heavy heart that we are today telling our many friends and supporters that Othersyde’s stay at the Engineers House is coming to an end.

“Despite numerous attempts to change this outcome, our landlords, the Cambridge Museum of Technology, will not extend our arrangement and we will cease trading on the 30th September.”

“We have made many friends and are hugely appreciative of your support and custom. We thank our staff and the Riverside community.”

One patron took to social media to say: “This is so very sad. It has been a wonderful gathering place. The museum gained a lot from the good vibes you created - the feeling around the whole place was transformed by your creative vison. It is so disappointing that it has come to this. We’ll see you in your new home for sure.”

Another added: “Thanks Othersyde, you have provided some wonderful memories and we are so fond of you and the whole team.”

Othersyde explained that they renovated the Engineer’s House site and built an escape game based on exhibits at the museum so were “hugely disappointed” when their contract was not renewed by the museum.

Matthew Taylor, owner of Othersyde, said: “We are opening a new venue at Mitchams Corner in the former HSBC building in Cambridge where we will carry on in the same spirit. It will be a lot of what we've done here. It will be a community hub. We’ll be doing cultural events, as well as food and drink of course. And we can be open there all year round whereas this place is very seasonal because it’s outside.”

The new venue, Alcademy, is set to open next year and will be “a new cafe, crypto bar and game space” according to the website alcademy.co.uk.

The Museum of Technology was contacted for a comment. In a statement on its website, the museum management said: “The Museum is delighted to announce that Calverley Brewery will be taking over the bar in the Engineer's House on 1st October 2022 and that Alforno, the popular pizza business, is continuing as is. We are excited about this new close relationship and look forward to providing the excellent service customers are used to. We would like to thank OtherSyde for their work over the last four years and wish them well in the future.”

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