Cycling cafes - The Book
Created by Kitty Pemberton-Platt for après sport
You pull up at the cafe and place your wheel into an empty bike space. Inside, there’s a table with enough chairs for your group and only a few steps to risk in cleated shoes. Hearty choices are scrawled across the menu board, there’s coffee being brewed, and the walls are filled with framed photographs of epic mountains. Subtle nods between like-minded strangers bonded in Lycra hint at a warm community. Welcome. You’ve just stepped into the charming universe of cycling cafes. The honest havens of those who ride.
Two years in the making
This book is a celebration of the UK’s endearing cycling cafe scene and an insight into the people, food and design behind each of these unique spots. To write it, I set out on my bike with my camera and notebook to find these havens, deconstruct their appeal, and uncover why they are so ingrained in our cycling psyche.
The book was printed in the UK. First edition of 300.
Self published, with the support of The Midnight Club.
A documentary about a cycling cafe. A story about so much more.
The launch of Cycling cafés is accompanied by a short documentary film that gives an insight into one of the unique places featured in the book. Woodside Welcome is a cycle café in Cumbria, run by wife and husband duo Debs and Mike and hosted in their garden, which they open every weekend for cyclists.
I rode from Leeds to Carlisle to visit the café and spend time with Debs and Mike, who perfectly encapsulate the spirit behind the book and of cycling cafes at large. The short film also features their infamous ‘ultimate sandwich’ and delves into why, nearing retirement, they decided to welcome cyclists from all over the world into their lives.
Long live the cycling cafe
I’m so pleased to have been able to acknowledge the beauty of cycling cafes. Particularly at a time when so many are unfortunately closing. This coffee table book is for those who cherish them too.