Wellbeing centre to shut as building taken on by vets

Rowan House in Hethersett.

Rowan House in Hethersett. - Credit: Peter Steward

A family-run business which has been operating for 33 years has been sold, with the economic downturn as a result of Covid cited as the reason.

The owners of Rowan House in Hethersett have described their decision to sell to Wymondham Veterinary Clinic as having been made with “much sadness".

Mary and Graham Tuddenham purchased the house and adjoining shop in Queen’s Road in 1988, and opened the first dedicated business centre in Norfolk.

Hethersett Business Centre later changed its name to The Business Base and became home to numerous independent businesses and national brands such as Halifax Building Society.

In 2013, the base introduced its first therapy suite and morphed into Rowan House Health and Well Being Centre, becoming home to more than 50 health practitioners and including Kin Café.

Rachel Pailes, centre manager and Tuddenham family member, said: "The world pandemic saw the instant closure of the entire centre and all its associated services and income. Initial recovery was slow but encouraging.

"However, the strict measures and then the second lockdown further reduced confidence. Earlier this year the family investigated additional income streams. We then received an approach from Wymondham Veterinary Clinic which recognised the potential of Rowan House.

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‘When something you have loved and invested in so heavily can be taken away from you so quickly and with such an unpredictable future, the security of the centre was extremely fragile. When approached by the buyers our head and hearts were torn in opposite directions, but we could see how this was such a good fit. The most difficult thing has been telling our staff."

Wymondham Vets will change its name to Rowan House Vets and the new owners have expressed a wish to keep the café in place.

A spokesperson said: "We are extremely excited to be moving our independent veterinary clinic to the heart of Hethersett and feel very lucky to have the opportunity to make Rowan House our new home. With the addition of parking and a lovely café, we are hoping to offer a family feel veterinary clinic in the heart of Hethersett."

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