Our residents can enjoy our Ruby Cafe, named after the namesake Austin 7 car, Ruby, as well as homemade meals cooked in our own kitchen. If there are any dietary concerns our substantial menu can be adapted to fit any requirements.
The Ruby Cafe menu consists of a range of coffees, hot chocolates, herbal teas, cold drinks and light snacks such as sandwiches, focaccias, croissants and assorted range of cakes and biscuits.
Open Monday to Friday 10am to 3pm
Have you seen the Austin Seven Ruby Saloon 1934 next to the Cafe at Olivet?
Sir Herbert Austin developed the Austin Seven in 1921 to make an affordable car for £120 with a minimal annual horsepower tax. Stanley Edge, an 18 year-old draughtsman from the Austin factory in Birmingham, convinced Austin to use a small 696 cc four-cylinder 7.2 horsepower engine.
The engine was enlarged in 1923, to produce 10 horsepower, but the already well-known “Austin seven” name was kept. England’s ‘Baby Austin’ giving 40 mpg, was her answer to America’s T Model Ford and appeared in various models with regular improvements until 1939.
Nearly 300,000 were made in Britain while thousands more were produced under licence to companies in France, Germany Japan and Australia. This display car was bought privately as a black painted wreck in 1960 by Harold Barker who intended it for his son Paul. When Harold was a teenager in the 1930’s, he accidentally dropped a nut down the spark plug hole of his father’s Austin Seven and was made to take the head off the engine block.
Thirty years later, Harold repeated this procedure as his first step to restore this classic car. He finally restored all the mechanical parts before he sold it in 1980 to Geoff Hughes who then sourced some missing bits and had it resprayed ruby red. When Geoff passed away in 2013, ownership passed to Olivet.
The Austin was only half the weight of the model T Ford and at 360 kg it was used in many pranks like being placed at the top of stairs or between two posts. Please take away – good memories of the Ruby café, not our car. Some of the 2,000 various models that still exist appear below.