A local customer, a locksmith and two coffees…

Yesterday, Storm Gareth made its presence known our way by constantly pushing our door open; frustratingly stealing the warmth and triggering the door alarm every time it did so.

Two customers were in; a woman from London who was in Leeds to visit her daughter, a university student currently in hospital – who was just looking for a coffee while waiting for the visiting times on the ward, and had no idea of the backstory of our cafe, and a local man who was enjoying a brew after dropping his daughters off at school.

The door kept opening and closing, and the four of us (myself, Lawrence our cafe manager and our two customers) were joking about it, and Lawrence suggested we speak to the locksmiths down the road to see if they can help. I took a few photos and walked the two minutes to Access Locksmiths.

They suggested we remove the inner workings of the door and bring it in and they’d have a look (if they came to us, it would be a £45 callout charge). I asked them what drinks I could bring them from the cafe when I return with the lock.

I returned to the cafe, and our customer, still enjoying his coffee after the school run, offered to remove the handles and get the mechanism out. A screwdriver was found, and five minutes later, our customer is walking back down to Access Locksmiths with two coffees and the door pieces. He was made up that he was able to help us in that way, I was made up that someone else was sorting it out, and our other customer was also made up that the door was going to be fixed and marvelled at the way things work in our cafe.

An hour later I returned to pick up the lock, fixed. They refused payment – they said the hot drinks were very welcome payment – so I thanked them profusely, took the lock back to the cafe, it was returned to the door.

The storm still raged throughout most of the day yesterday, but we were warm and cosy in the cafe thanks to the kindness of a local customer, a locksmith and two coffees…



published by Anna Dyson
Founder and Director of ToastLoveCoffee. CEO of Dyson family, Roundhay (Leeds) branch which involves a huge array of skills impossible to imagine or articulate! Formerly, Jewish educator and community professional.


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