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God’s Providence House in the heart of Newport has been awarded a 1-star food hygiene rating by the Isle of Wight Council.

Inspectors visited the premises on 8th January this year and found that whilst hygienic food handling was generally satisfactory, improvement is needed in the cleanliness and conditions of facilities and building.

Shockingly, major improvement is deemed necessary for the management of food safety which includes checks to ensure that food sold or served is safe to eat.

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The cafe, located in St Thomas’ Square, has failed to score any higher than 2 stars in the past 5 years but that has now been downgraded to just 1 star.

UPDATE @ 14:55 – Robin Crawley, the manager of God’s Providence House, has reacted to the latest report:

“I can make everyone aware that the issues are down to the structure of the building and an old log book. The building is over 300 years old and the particular issues that were flagged were:

a) No hand wash facilities for food prep area – the lady who came to check didn’t turn the tap hard enough as it is stiff. The hand wash facilities are fine.

b) Peeling paint on 2 parts of the ceiling. As the ceilings are so old they are very low and despite being repainted 18 months ago they were showing signs of wear. This has now been remedied.

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c) Insufficient extraction. This was flagged 3 years ago when we were asked to put in an extraction fan out of the back of the building. We informed them that this wasn’t possible as the building is grade 2 star listed so we put an extraction fan in a disused vent in the ceiling instead.

d) A wall inside the building and next to the staff toilet (which is 2 doors away from the kitchen) needs re plastering. This is ongoing.

e) The logbook was out of date. This has been renewed and updated.

f) Our milk fridge had some rust on the outside and it needed replacing. This has been done.

“The inspector actually apologised at the end of the meeting for what the rating was going to be. She understood everything was fine with the food, temperature levels, prep areas etc and that the age of the building was the issue.

“Don’t get me wrong I’m not making excuses and we are fixing what was wrong”.

The views/opinions expressed in these comments are solely those of the author and do not represent those of Island Echo. House rules on commenting must be followed at all times.
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When we visited we were disgusted at the conditions and the quality and size of the food portions, would never visit again

Mark Occomore

A wonderful island tea shop…lovely breakfasts! Never had an issue in all the years going there…
Keep reaching for the 2 stars Robin!


No aim a lot higher than 2 stars, if you want to stay in business that is. Obviously some people will happy, most reading this won’t be.
It’s in your hands ( make or break time ).

Mark Occomore

It’s difficult to get a 5 star rating in a 300 year old building….food hygiene has always been good there though…. that’s what counts for me…. I’m happy to eat in a historic building with character and accept a few less stars…than a modern Formica and stainless steel soulless eatery with 5 stars…. but that’s just me……


Very unfortunate, this was a highly respected business a few years ago. There is a regular pattern of new owners who change things around with little understanding of the business, this all to often results in lower quality in service and standard of food., not to mention a hike in price.
With more and more ‘ fast food premises’ being given licences across the Island, the likes of Gods providence are/will become doomed to history.


Even worse that Fat Harrys. No small wonder these businesses fail. Better off going to Spoons, or Mc D’s. Food may be not top notch, but the staff and management HAVE to ensure it is clean and safe. NOT so small owner ‘profit’ driven eating establishments IT is NOT in their interest to dump food gone past its prime as it is THEIR profit gone. YET spoons and Mc D’s, it is NOT in their interests to risk doing such as the disgruntled staff will likely blow the whistle and the manager gains NOTHING from risking doing so. Big difference.… Read more »

Phil Stat

Can check for ‘hygiene ratings’ of all food places through this link:


Stick in town or Isle of Wight, and when list comes up, can sort by rating (by clicking on rating)


Helpful advice Phil


Another food poison outlet!


It’s nothing to major the best cup of tea real tea leaves the breakfast
Is good and staff nice.


Lovely place and lovely staff and helpful staff i


I agree Oliver, it is a lovely place and like going back in time. I have always had nice food there and the place is very relaxed. These type of establishments are becoming harder and harder to find. And Az, it is interesting to see you suggest visiting Mcdonalds and “Spoons”, seeing as you are usually so against anyone or anything coming to island. The place is unfortunately being over run with chain restaurants and hotels, which I personally feel is very sad to see. Instead of suggesting things like this, perhaps try and support a local business, despite of… Read more »


Jon, I prefer local places to eat and drink rather than ‘chains’ but for the reason stated feel they are safer on food hygiene practices. Say you at home had an expensive Steak, and the cat chewed a bit, likely it would not be dumped, (the steak not the cat, well maybe), but washed off, re trimmed and eaten. If that occurred in your place of work, you would bin such without a care. Big chains wages are not dependant on selling any risk taking, whereas smaller outlets cannot afford the loss and are more inclined to take a risk… Read more »

Grumpy Old Git

In the past, it has not been unusual to see a staff member sat INSIDE the back door smoking, with an open door between them and the kitchen area

Bob Frapples

I think there’s a link between the one vehicle crashes and these low hygiene places, people are eating there and having medical episodes


Had things not been allowed to end up ‘ wrong ‘ there would be no need to put them right, how much more would have been allowed to end up ‘ wrong ‘ had an inspection not taken place? Food outlets have inspections for public safety, it is up to the owners/management to ensure standards are kept up. If you’re not up to it then move on, make way for someone with the finances/knowledge to keep to the required standard. This was once a first class restaurant full of history and excellent food, this is now sadly proven by inspection… Read more »


We eat there regularly and always enjoy our visits. Our visits to Newport wouldn’t be the same without GPH. We certainly won’t stop going there.

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