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Sophisticated Saddleworth!

November 27, 2011

It’s a strange slightly schizophrenic place where I live. Were if not for the geography it would undoubtedly be a town – but the hills and valleys mean that each part keeps (and jealously guards) its village identity. It is undoubtedly a straightforward, no-nonsense sort of a place – how could it be otherwise when the greatest dream many of its inhabitants seem to nurture is that of belonging to Yorkshire? That’s not all there is to it though, as Saddleworth is also the ‘posh’ part of Oldham (an oxymoron if ever there was one). It’s home to comers-in – professionals from Manchester and further afield, who provide a clientele for the many clothes and coffee shops, and we have recently had a new addition to the latter.

In place of the ill-fated Chutneys – a deli which couldn’t survive the twin advents of Tesco and the Recession, we have the latest incarnation of the coffee shop. Don’t get me wrong, we’re not short of places to go but it’s often a trade off between coffee and comfort: there’s Wilbury’s – the chairs are too big and clunky and the coffee’s just instant; a month of Sundaes – decent coffee, nice squashy sofas if you go upstairs, but they’re a bit slippery and if you relax too much you could just slide down to the floor; the Riverside cafe – upright chairs, a big old fashioned; Love Coffee – quite nice for sitting outside on the occasional good day, but I always forget about it; the garden centre – good if you fancy a walk by the canal, and with an exceedingly wide range of cake; Christy’s – good coffee but quite uncomfortable seating, especially if you end up on one of the backless square pouffe things; the cupcake place – delicious cupcakes, naturally, and delightfully retro and girly but hard chairs. Up until recently Jamaica Blue had been heading the pack with its cappuccinos and sofas, but the new place has brought more style to the equation, although I can’t picture myself knitting there – or if I did it would have to be something very chic.

The Domestic Goddess and I had lunch there last Friday (and so, it seemed, did almost everyone else we know) and we have only favourable things to report about their sandwiches too – beautifully presented on wooden platters with artfully dressed leaves – not a tasteless tomato garnish in sight.

It’s good when properties don’t just stand empty, and what’s not to love about a stylish coffee shop that also has a wine menu, but I hope it doesn’t prove the nemesis of any of the others, these are hard times and there are only so many cups of coffee that even the most public spirited of us can get through in a week!

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. Creative Crafter permalink
    December 2, 2011 2:11 am

    You’ve brought a tear to my eye. It’s this time of year in particular when I’d love to sit down in a coffee shop in Saddleworth to chat and giggle about something and nothing! Have a decaf and a yummy cake for me. Miss you all. X

  2. pictfamily permalink*
    December 2, 2011 9:19 am

    We’d certainly love to have you there not knitting with us. We’ll do our best to keep all the coffee shops open so that you have a wide range available when you return. Miss you too.

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