York to get a new reading café in the city centre

A new reading café is on the menu. Photograph: Richard McDougall
30 Jan 2020 @ 7.32 am
| Food & drink

Another reading café is to open in York city centre, complete with books, events and pavement seating.

Explore York Libraries and Archives will open the café in Hungate this spring.

As well as providing a valuable community space for Hungate residents, income from the venture will help Explore to fund its growing and innovative programme of activities and services.

Chief executive of Explore Fiona Williams said:

  • We’re delighted to be opening this new reading café. Our reading cafés bring together books and coffee and cake.

    They offer an easy way to discovering the joy of reading for everyone and the wonder of a fresh yummy cake.

Meeting space

On the site of the new café at Hungate. L-R: Cllr Darryl Smalley, Sarah Garbacz and Susan Brook of Explore
Facilities at the café will include outside seating space, a meeting room, books to borrow, and regular Explore events for children and adults.

Explore has already opened reading cafés in Rowntree Park and in Homestead Park in the summer, as well as cafés inside its libraries at York, Acomb, Burnholme and Tang Hall.

Explore is working with the developer Lendlease and City of York Council to provide a high quality, sustainable community space for the residents of Hungate, and the new café is likely to open in April 2020.

Council culture lead Cllr Darryl Smalley said:

  • Explore is bucking the national trend by opening a new library space, supported by income from their café.

    This is a proven and popular format in York which helps bring more people into libraries and benefit from the many services they run.

Last February Explore won the contract to deliver the city’s libraries and archives services for the next 15 years.

It followed a competitive bidding process. It means all York’s 14 libraries will stay open until at least the end of 2034.