An iconic 1970s van has been restored and converted to become a mobile cafe with all profits going to support Rowcroft Hospice.

Torquay’s seafront is home to the hospice’s Citroen H van, which dates from 1973.

The mobile cafe is known as Ella’s Mobile Café - named after Ella Rowcroft, whose generosity led to the foundation of Rowcroft Hospice.

The eye-catching café, positioned by Torquay’s harbour slipway on Vaughan Parade, has been an instant hit with locals and tourists alike.

The current pitch is secured until next March and the café is open Thursdays to Sundays, 10am to 5pm, plus some Wednesdays.

“Following a number of months in lockdown, we’re really delighted to be out and about again,” says Judy Smart, Ella’s Mobile Café manager.

“Here, with a stunning view of the harbour, we’re offering our wonderful customers the chance to enjoy a fabulous range of hot and cold drinks and tasty treats, and at the same time, to support Rowcroft Hospice in caring for local patients and families. So please do pop along to treat yourself.

“As a charity, Rowcroft plays such an important role in South Devon in caring for local patients and families, particularly for those going through some of the hardest times imaginable. It’s a real honour to know that, as well as serving delicious food and drink, Ella’s Mobile Café is supporting the amazing care that Rowcroft provides to our community.”

Rowcroft is always looking for volunteers to provide extra support. Judy has a few volunteers helping in the café, and she would welcome inquiries from anyone else looking to volunteer.

The quirky 47-year-old van, affectionately named ‘Ella’, was renovated over recent years by students from South Devon College with support from other local organisations including Central Garage Torbay, Brixham Crafting Bees, Van-Formers, Salters Garage and Motor Parts Direct.