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Hillary Caterers Cafe

Home > London > Cafes | Cheap | Coffee | Street Food | Tea
by Mike Whyte (subscribe)
Published April 30th 2014
King of the road

This doesn't look like much on first sight - in fact you could quite easily walk past it and not really think anything of it - but stop and take a look, you will really find it is worth it.

Also known as Syd's Coffee Stall (a more appropriate name really as the 'Hillary' of the name in the title is actually in commemoration of the explorer Sir Edmund Hillary), this place has been around since the First World War, and so is therefore worthy of your attention.

What does it sell? Well very traditional East End tea break stuff - milky teas in proper cups, meat pies and rolls, and maybe more unexpectedly, taxi cab money boxes and lighters (possibly on account of the popularity it obviously has with the taxi drivers of the area).

There is a lot of history to the lovely little cart, probably too much to tell you about here - suffice to say that one of the stories will give you an understanding of the importance of the place.

The stall, over time, has been more and more connected to its surroundings, with mains electricity, gas and water all linking the stall to the street it is based in. Interestingly it is for this same reason that when the council came to modernise the road they went around Syd's rather than move it - you can see evidence of this if you look under the stall - they are real original cobble stones you can see under there.

Now you can see why this place is an institution, and by going along and having a cup of tea you will be helping keep this institution alive - mine's two sugars...

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Why? A real East-end institution in the heart of Shoreditch
When: Daily business hours
Phone: 0181 346 4764
Website: n/a
Where: Corner of Calvert Avenue and Shorditch High Street Shorditch London E1 6JN
Cost: Cheap (probably the cheapest in London)
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