Looking for a great place to enjoy a coffee and / or lunch? Want to avoid the large chains? Our Food for Thought series will offer you insight into cafés that provide good food and drink whilst helping others.

Platform Café 

Address: Platform, Hornsey Road Baths, 260 Hornsey Road, London N7 7QT
Open to the public: 9.30am  to 4pm Monday to Saturday
Free WiFi is available.
Website: www.platformislington.org.uk/platform-cafe.aspx

Platform café is part of Platform, a youth-led arts venue for Islington’s young people. In 2011 the former Hornsey Road Baths was transformed into a 100-seat theatre, a 150-seat performance space, media suites, a recording studio, dance studio and a café.

The café is run by Lift Kitchen, a social enterprise employing professional chefs who are supported by young apprentices training for NVQ accreditations.

Decorated by young people, the café has a fun and creative vibe to it.

Platform Café: Affordable, Youth-Led Café In North London

‘Sit down’, ‘She likes you’, ‘Platform Made Me’, ‘Lets keep the convo flowing’ – every hand-painted seat in Platform’s cafe has a different voice and style, just like the young people who made them.

Platform Cafe: Affordable, Youth-Led Café In North London

Food & drink

Fresh, reasonably priced food is available, along with soft drinks and union hand roasted fair trade coffee.

Platform Café: Affordable, Youth-Led Café In North London

A cappuccino at the Platform Café

Platform Café: Affordable, Youth-Led Café In North London

Veggie quiche

What’s nearby?

Emirates Stadium – the home of Arsenal Football Club is a 15 minute walk away.


This is a great little café providing lunch and coffee at a reasonable price. It supports young people but it does not feel like a ‘charity’, so you don’t need to worry about being asked for donations or being bombarded with lots of information on the work they do. The young staff are friendly, and incredibly hard working – not stopping for a moments rest during busy periods and finding work to do (e.g cleaning) when it’s quiet.

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About Author

Nisha Kotecha is the Founder of Good News Shared. Having worked and volunteered for charities in the UK for over 10 years, Nisha is on a mission to highlight how amazing charities are.