Friday, 20 August 2010

New Piccadilly

There are certain times when only a traditional cafe will do. After a long day or a hard night nothing brings relief like strong tea, frothy coffee and something greasy and sustaining to eat. If you can add some '50s interior decor, a good display of formica and a forlorn air of days wasted and dreams unfulfilled it's a perfect combination.
Everyone has their favourites and the New Picadilly, just off Piccadilly Circus was mine. Popular but never too busy it was the perfect haven from the hustle of London's West End. The waiters still wore a sort of white smock uniform, the wireless was always tuned to Radio 3 and the BYO sign in the window made it a great cheap night out.
Having been under threat for years the developers finally closed it last year. Rumour suggested the V&A might purchase the interior but sadly it's more likely the choice fittings were stripped and the rest ended up in a skip.

My Starbucks Grande Latte will never compare.

Scans from the wonderful Adrian Maddox 'Classic Cafes', Black Dog 2003


  1. I and at least one other contributor used to go there regularly, until it closed...

  2. It was rather lovely, wasn't it? :)

  3. RIP The New Piccadilly. That was a favourite of ours. Many a plot hatched or Saturday morning hangover nursed there.

  4. Sounds like it would have been fantastic. A couple of my favourite spots that sound a bit like that in NZ have closed down - they were a mixture of formica and a kind of decaying Victorian grandeur.