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Wednesday, February 23, 2005


The issues that really matter

Do you envy political pioneers? Do you ever wish you had been among the first to start a successful campaign? Well now's your chance.

If you possess even the tiniest spark of humanity in your soul, you will not need to be convinced of the vital importance of the good old-fashioned British greasy spoon. Invariably Italian-run yet quintessentially British. Caffs with 1950s Formica decor and matching sets of red and brown plastic sauce dispensers, where you half expect Tommy Steele to come through the door at any moment. A home-from-home, where you can order a large fry-up and a mug of tea and still get change from £4.

These cafes are indispensable and yet, sadly, the species is threatened. A pincer movement of fashion and redevelopment, in the form of trendy coffee bars and rising property rentals, is driving these cafes out of business.

We cannot allow the bacon sandwich to be drowned in a sea of 'latte grande'. Now is the time to act.

I am pleased to learn from the excellent
eggbaconchipsandbeans and a good place for a cup of tea and a think blogs that there will be a meeting of the Cafe Preservation Society at 6.30pm on Friday 25th February to plan a campaign.

The venue could not be more appropriate: the
New Piccadilly Cafe (8 Denman Street, near Piccadilly Circus, London W1). Formica and Pyrex heaven.

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