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Friendly Café Scheme

  • Date Updated

    06 May 2020

  • Type


A new scheme that is aimed at reducing loneliness and social isolation was launched  at two town centre cafes in Bury.

This scheme was the idea of Andy Smith from Bury. On visiting several cafes, he noticed that lots of people use the cafes as a social outlet but sit alone at their table. Andy thought that if there was a scheme in place that made it easier for people to talk and sit together, they would be more inclined to do so. This was where the scheme began.

Andy said “I often go to cafes to do my work and get some peace, during my visits there are always people on their own or with babies. I thought they would probably all get on well together given the chance and so I approached the Friendly Bury project lead to talk about my idea. This is where the scheme was born”.

The Friendly Café Scheme allows people the chance to have a drink and a chat with someone else in the same position.

How does it work?

  • Visit one of the cafes listed below at the times stated
  • Make a purchase
  • Ask the staff for a “friendly café” sign.
  • Place the sign on your table and wait for people to join you.
  • Alternatively, after your purchase, sit with someone who is already displaying a “friendly café” sign and introduce yourself. Don’t be afraid, if a sign is displayed, the person wants to chat.

The following cafes have kindly agreed to take part in this pilot which is aimed at reducing social isolation and loneliness and is open to anyone aged 18 or over.

  • Bap, 46 Haymarket, Millgate Shopping Centre, Bury, BL9 0BX. Friendly café scheme is available all day on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays.

  • Tristian's Traditional Family Restaurant, 21 Princess Parade, Bury, BL9 0QL. Friendly café scheme is available from 930am-330pm on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays.

  • New Venue: Hollands@Holcolmbe, 403 Bolton Road West, Holcombe Brook BL0 9NR. Friendly café scheme is available Tues, Weds and Thurs from 3-4 pm

  So why not go along and meet someone new.



Bury & Local Area