For some people the “Benther Berg-Terrassen” are probably still known as a popular spot for dancing and good food. In the meantime, however, dance events have long since ceased to be celebrated on the former restaurant grounds 15 kilometres west of Hanover. Where once up to 3,000 cups of coffee, 2,000 pieces of cake and 1,200 glasses of Berliner Weisse per day went over the counter, there is now an overgrown ruin. The once bustling activity between and around the old walls can only be guessed at.
The “Benther Berg-Terrassen” have a long history: what started out as a simple beverage stand for hikers and walkers under the direction of Johannes Georg Ernst Rehbock, has developed over the years into a restaurant that has been extended and rebuilt again and again and has experienced several changes of operator and conversions. After a first conversion in 1879, Rehbock opened a restaurant on the site of the beverage stand for the first time. At that time, however, it still operated under the name “ERICHS RUH”(“EHRICHS REST”). Even in the early days, the restaurant caused quite a stir, as it attracted many young people, especially on weekends, and invited them to celebrate.
In the course of the 2nd World War the restaurant was converted into a military hospital. In addition, a U-shaped bunker was built below the restaurant car park to provide refuge for patients and nursing staff during the increasingly frequent air raids. Even after the war, the premises initially remained in a different function. Thus, they served the English military government as a children’s home for several years.
When the restaurant reopened at Christmas 1948 under the new name “Benther Berg-Terrassen”, a lot had changed due to the circumstances after the war. In the beginning, food had to be purchased with food stamps and even briquettes and alcoholic drinks were partly brought in from the guests’ own supplies.
Over the years, the “Benther Berg-Terrassen” became more and more popular and even international exhibition visitors gladly took advantage of the offer. Moreover, s house band played every Wednesday, as well as weekends and at weddings, up to 1,500 seats were needed outside to cope with the crowds.
Furthermore, the structural change in the society led to the fact that the young population in particular increasingly turned to more modern musical offerings. In 1974 the “Benther Berg-Terrassen” had to close down for good after more than 100 years. One year later, the building burned down completely, so that today only the ruins remind us of the former factory. Many people have kept the “Benther Berg-Terrassen” in their minds, especially as a place for fateful encounters, where some of them got to know their partners for life.