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“I just wanted a sandwich” 2 of 5 stars
Review of The Rheged Centre

The Rheged Centre
Redhills, Penrith CA11 0DQ, England
+44 1768 868000
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Ranked #22 of 55 things to do in Penrith
Activities: Shopping, Dining
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Attraction details
Owner description: Housed under a unique grass roof with a diverse programme of exhibitions, live streaming, film, family entertainment with a mix of shopping and dining experiences.
Norwich, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
“I just wanted a sandwich”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed May 18, 2014

Let me first say this is a review of the 'Pod' cafe in Rheged, not the centre itself. We popped in for a lunchtime sandwich. Two cheese and chutney sandwich, one ham and red onion. Two glasses of Apple juice and one of milk, and a bag of crisps. The sandwiches came with some salad slopped onto the plate ( the carrot salad was nice, the tomato and cottage cheese looked like some toms had been covered in baby sick, but tasted not too bad). The cheese sandwich had way too much mass-produced grated cheese in very dry bread, and the ham had no onion (run out), tons of, well, just ham, and again dry bread. The whole experience was that of a place that didn't care about its food or customers.
Oh, the cost of three sandwiches, three small drinks and a bag of crisps? £25

Visited May 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WestmorlandFamily, Manager at The Rheged Centre, responded to this review, June 12, 2014
Good morning. Thank you for taking the time to give us your feedback, although we were very disappointed to hear that the sandwiches you recently purchased were not of the expected quality. Your experience has highlighted inconsistencies in our in-house training, which has now been addressed.

We introduced a new range of sandwiches into the Pod Café in the week prior to your visit, in order to celebrate British Sandwich Week. This proved to be a great success and we received a lot of positive customer feedback. It would appear that on the day of your visit, because of the increased demand, instead of making a small volume of sandwiches and replenishing them frequently; a larger volume of sandwiches was produced and therefore on display for a longer period of that day than desired. The rolls are made fresh every day and discarded at the end of the day, however, they are not packaged hence the need to replenish throughout the day. The cheese you describe was not the one specified, as it should have been cut from a block, and we accept the lack of a named ingredient is not acceptable and can assure you this will not happen again. Your feedback has given us the opportunity to review and revisit our training and sandwich making. We would very much like you to come back to Rheged, to give us a chance to rectify the situation. I would therefore be grateful if you could direct mail me to discuss further. Again, thank you for your comments and sincere apologies that your sandwiches were disappointing. Kind regards. The Rheged Team.
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Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
UK
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
“Good day out, let down by Peter Sidwell cafe staff”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 19, 2014

My friend and I went yesterday for the day, with my two children. It was our last day in the lake district and we had seen this activity centre so thought we would try it out.
When we first got there, we went straight to the pottery painting area where my daughter painted a figurine and my son played in the soft play area. The soft play area is suitable for younger children and I wouldn't say it was suitable for children over the age of five. My son is 3 so everyone was happy.
We also perused the shopping area which sells some lovely clothes (NoaNoa, Joules and White Stuff to name a few) and other gift type items. I understand others comments about the shops being expensive, but this is a prime retail outlet, not a discount place.
I paid £5 each for the children to take part in a craft workshop which involved them making easter bonnets and decorated eggs on sticks. It was a lovely event and well worth the money. The children took about an hour to make their things, we weren't rushed and the company running the event had plenty of supplies and were very friendly and organised.
We then went to the Peter Sidwell cafe. This is where our visit was soured. We picked a table and sat down. You have to order at the bar, which is no problem. My friend and I ordered separately but on the same table and one after another.
When we sat down again, my food arrived immediately. It turned out the waiter had brought it to the wrong table. Not a problem and an easy mistake to make. Or so I thought. Our drinks arrived and whilst we were waiting for the food I noticed a couple of people talking standing next to our table. This conversation went on for about 15 minutes. It was two members of staff, just chatting. Totally unprofessional and really distracting as they were literally standing right next to our table. My friend then asked another waitress for some lemon and was told they didn't have any. 5 minutes later, three slices of lemon were thrown on to our table.
When our food arrived, my sons lunch was brought first (by one of the chatting waitresses) and plonked on the table. The waitress also had another meal. When I tried to say to her that what she had was my friends, she dismissed me as if I was not even worth looking at and gave it to another gentleman.
The rest of the food arrived, apart from my friends lunch. The waitress looked at us as if we were telling fibs about what she had ordered and declared that she had to check with the chef. Turns out I was right. She had given my friends lunch to someone else. Brilliant. After blatantly trying to blame everyone but herself she offered my friend a drink whilst she waited, which she didn't want as she had only just got her first one.
My daughter ordered the childs soup. It was served in an ikea plastic dish. With a slice of white buttered bread. Not the hot roll advertised. When we pointed this out my daughter was given a bread roll.
Overall, the food was nice but the service and presentation was severely lacking.
After we ate we went to the outside play area (£1.50 per child) - which I didn't mind paying till I realised that half the people in there hadn't. There is no checking on the gate if you have paid or not.

So, overall, a lovely day. Sadly let down by the food service.

Visited April 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WestmorlandFamily, Manager at The Rheged Centre, responded to this review, April 28, 2014
Good morning. Thank you for taking the time to feedback following your recent visit. We are delighted you enjoyed our children's activities and our shops. Over the next 12 months we will be looking to enhance further our family area and would welcome any ideas you have for new attractions. We have also introduced a new hand stamping system for outdoor play, to ensure our team can be more efficient in checking that everyone has paid - so thank you for bringing this to our attention. We were very disappointed to hear about the poor service you received in our Café. Please accept our apologies and rest assured that we have followed up on the issues you flagged and are taking some quite specific actions to ensure they do not reoccur. We hope that you will consider returning to see us again soon. Kind regards The Rheged team
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Penrith, United Kingdom
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Godsend on a rainy day”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 18, 2014

The Rheged Centre is well worth a visit in it's own right with a variety of attractions, some interesting shops and a couple of different places to eat. It is a staple when we have visitors to the town, but it comes into it's own if you happen to be in the town when the weather is inclement - we are called the Lake district for a reason. You can park close to the facility and there is enough to occupy most types for a good few hours. There is a cinema showing themed documentaries and there are several exhibitions each year. It isn't the cheapest place in the region but at least it's under cover!

Visited March 2014
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WestmorlandFamily, Manager at The Rheged Centre, responded to this review, April 29, 2014
Good morning. Thank you for your feedback and we are delighted you enjoy visiting Rheged, especially when you have friends and relatives to stay. I am sorry you find us a little expensive. We are a local family business who stock our shops with items chosen by us. We champion artisan food producers, British made products, ethically sourced products as well as items which have an interesting story to tell or we simply love them for their originality or design. The majority of our products are from Britain and can not easily be found on the high street. This means that some items in our shops are a little more expensive. I will however pass your comments back to our buyers, as it 's vital we get the right mix of price points. Each cafe offers a very different menu, which again use local produce including meat from our farm and our Chef Peter Sidwell changes them regularly with the seasons.We home cook all our food here at Rheged using fresh local ingredients and this too can add to the cost. However we have a shopping loyalty scheme in place and a loyalty card for Pod café, so please ask about this next time you are visiting . Kind regards, The Rheged Team
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Carlisle, United Kingdom
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“Fantastic service :0)”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 1, 2014 via mobile

Came here with work friends last week one evening to a event. The food was beautiful. Service was fantastic :0) .the manager done a super job all his team were happy and smiley it made the evening very enjoyable..Will defo return soon withmy family. x

Visited March 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WestmorlandFamily, Manager at The Rheged Centre, responded to this review, April 28, 2014
Good morning. Thank you so much for your feedback and we are delighted to hear you had a lovely time at Rheged. We will also share your kind comments with our hospitality team here at Rheged . Kind regards. The Rheged Team
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Carlisle
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
26 attraction reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
“Just a 'posh' expensive shopping centre”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 29, 2014

Rheged is built into the ground and so no great visual impact but the petrol station and large car park more than make themselves known!

There's a few cafes where the food is average but quite expensive. Children's toy shop and clothes shop has some really nice things but I'd need to remortgage to buy anything! Clothes shops, book shops, art...all good for browsing but you could biy cheaper elsewhere.

Soft play is £3 for an hour and although its not massive its one of my favourites. It was fairly quiet today (we arrived at 12.40pm) and kids were well behaved and supervised by parents.

There's an IMAX at Rheged. We didn't go today but on previous occasions its been just what you'd expect. Nothing special.

Its worth a look if you're in the area but better places to eat and shop at in the Lake District.

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WestmorlandFamily, Manager at The Rheged Centre, responded to this review, April 14, 2014
Thank you for your feedback and we are pleased to hear you enjoy visiting our soft play. We were very disappointed to hear that you feel our 10 individual shops are "expensive". We are a local family business who stock our shops with items chosen by us. We champion artisan food producers, British made products, ethically sourced products as well as items which have an interesting story to tell or we simply love them for their originality or design. The majority of our products are from Britain and can not easily be found on the high street. This means that some items in our shops are a little more expensive. I will however pass your comments back to our buyers, as it 's vital we get the right mix of price points for our markets. I am sorry to hear you are not a big fan of our cafes. Each cafe offers a very different menu, which again use local produce including meat from our farm and our Chef Peter Sidwell changes them regularly with the seasons.We home cook all our food here at Rheged using fresh local ingredients and this too can add to the cost. We are currently reviewing our cinema offer and have started live streaming the Royal Ballet, National Theatre, the English National Opera and music events when they are performed live in London and we are keen to become known as a centre of excellence for interesting films about Cumbria and which have real relevance to Cumbria.
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