York store to be transformed into ‘distinctively independent’ coffee shop

The 200 Degrees café in Lincoln. Photograph: 200degs.com

A speciality coffee chain is to open its first York branch, as the reconfiguration of the city-centre economy continues.

200 Degrees, which began in Nottingham, has revealed plans to convert the former LK Bennett shop in Low Petergate. The shop closed last year, when the brand was sold to new owners.


The coffee firm was founded in 2012 by Rob Darby and Tom Vincent, who met while studying at Nottingham University more than 15 years earlier.

The company has branches in Nottingham, Birmingham, Leeds, Sheffield, Cardiff, Liverpool, Leicester and Lincoln. It also runs five barista schools.

‘Relaxed comfort’

It’s moving in to the old LK Bennett shop on Low Petergate. Photograph: Richard McDougall
In a planning application to City of York Council, they say: “200 Degrees now employs in excess of 150 people across England and Wales.

“With their journey growing, Rob and Tom want to ensure York is part of it.”

Their website says:

  • We’ve opened 11 distinctively independent coffee shops (with more to come) where coffee lovers can drink 200 Degrees Coffee in its natural environment, served by our team of highly skilled baristas.

    The atmosphere is one of relaxed comfort, the wi-fi works and our food is prepared fresh everyday in each shop.

    Takeaway is available for our coffee and fresh food and we serve a range of vegan and gluten-free sandwiches, salads, cakes and pastries.

In 2018, YorkMix revealed that more than 40 shop buildings in the city had been turned into cafes, bars or restaurants since 2010.

The number now stands at around 50, with several other applications still pending or due to be implemented.

Recent or imminent conversions include the St Paul’s bookshop in Fossgate, which became Kalpakavadi restaurant in November; and the old Joy store in High Ousegate which is to become part of the expanded Ate O’Clock restaurant.

Permission for further conversions is also in place in streets including Blake Street, Market Street, Fossgate, Goodramgate and Whip-Ma-Whop-Ma-Gate.