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Ex-addicts invite MP Jim Fitzpatrick for nosh-up at Paper & Cup coffee shop

PUBLISHED: 00:01 08 February 2013 | UPDATED: 08:24 08 February 2013

The new coffee-bookshop

The new coffee-bookshop

Danny Elwes

A not-for-profit community coffee-and-bookshop run by recovering addicts in London’s East End is expanding into catering with a new kitchen to dish up hot meals through the day.

A book at coffee breakA book at coffee break

They have invited their local MP for Poplar & Limehouse, Jim Fitzpatrick, for a slap-up nosh at the official Valentine’s Day opening next Thursday of Paper & Cup, which was set up by Spitalfields Crypt Trust in December.

The trust made a successful pitch for the site at Poplar Harca housing organisation’s St Paul’s Way community centre in Bow Common, against high street commercial competitors.

The Trust’s project manager Brent Clark has taken on men and women who have gone through an addiction recovery programme and trained them in catering as a way back into society.

“Our trainees say the best thing about it is that they don’t feel like they’re in recovery,” he said. “They feel like normal people in a normal job—that’s when we know we’re on the path to success.”

The coffee-cum-bookshop is dishing up coffee made by trained baristas as well as hot food and home-baked cakes by trainee chefs under the watchful eye of Lexington contract catering which has been helping to set up the project.

But its aim is more about providing “a little hideaway to finish that gripping novel or just a place to catch up with friends.”

The not-for-profit social enterprise retains the essence of the Crypt Trust’s original Paper & Cup coffee-bookshop in Shoreditch opened just four months ago where books, collectors’ items, work from local illustrators and artists and bespoke goods are on sale alongside the food and drink—and of course with Wifi connection for its lap-top customers.

The new Paper & Cup is in St Paul’s Way Centre at 83 St Paul’s Way, Bow Common, off Burdett Road. Nearest Tube: Mile End, or DLR: Devons Road.


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