Coffee Cellar’s Demise?

Anne has pointed out something worrying about the Coffee Cellar:

“I went past today and its no longer there – theres plastic sheeting in the windows and it seems my favourite little piece of Greenwich has gone! Its been shut for the last 2 weeks – the weekend before that the guy who runs it was telling me he was going to have to go into hospital and I’m a bit worried and thought you might know!”

The Phantom replies:

To my great shame, I’ve hardly been around for the past few weeks and I’ve clearly been taking my eye off the ball. Rumours have been abounding about the poor guy’s health for some time. I had hoped he was getting better. I’m sorry to hear this. Perhaps he’s finally retired. I will miss the place.

I guess it’s possible it’s just being spruced up – but in a way that would sadden me even more. What I love about this place is its shabby, atmospheric 1960s/70s interior, with that fantastic orange mosaic cubby hole at the back and the hip, funky gloom the place exudes. It’s a place to cocoon yourself, on a rainy day, when your boyfriend’s gone off with your best mate and the dancette’s at the mender’s. A place to pore over Lambretta maintance manuals with the lads or giggle with your girlfriends about Twiggy’s new haircut.

To lose that atmosphere would be to lose something fundamental about the very coffee itself, let alone the cafe. After all, we can buy coffee anywhere (though decent coffee is somewhat harder to find.) What I really love is finding somewhere that gives me that extra something – that je ne sais quoi that feeds the soul as well as the body. If the Coffee Cellar’s gone, it will be a sad day indeed.


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