An innovative coffee shop designed with toddlers in mind has taken its first steps, applauded by Chester MP Chris Matheson.
Coffeetots Play Cafe, in Seller Street, Chester, offers parents and young children a stress-free sanctuary where quality refreshments can be enjoyed while the little ones play.
The idea was born when teachers Lee and Natalie Stevens started their own family.
Lee said: “When our baby boy arrived we soon realised there were few places to take our son Seb in Chester where we didn’t feel anxious.
“We wanted to provide somewhere that does the best coffee and tea and caters for toddlers and babies too.”
The play café boasts a colourful gated play area and the priority is to make parents, carers and grandparents feel welcome, providing an opportunity to relax and enjoy a bite to eat as their children play.
Lee added: “We support other local businesses where we can – our coffee beans come from Beanmachines based in Cheshire, our tea comes from The Cheshire Tea Company, which is a small and independently owned business, and our cakes are made locally in Handbridge.”
Not only are delicious cakes, toasted bagels and sandwiches on offer, but the Coffeetots team are proud of their toddler finger food platters, smoothies and baby food pouches.
Natalie, a primary school music teacher, said: “We have baby and toddler groups of our own – Singalong and Music Time and ‘What’s in the bag’ songtime. We also have coffee mornings dedicated to grandparents, dads and expectant mums.”
The couple also aim to promote other local child-related businesses, such as independent toy shops in the city centre, and other baby and toddler groups in the area.
An information board by the front door is a useful source of information for customers. A comfortable changing facility has been developed to ensure a trouble-free experience for parents.
She added: “We found a splendid canal-side location, perfect for feeding the ducks. We even sell duck feed!”
Mr Matheson said: “This is a fabulous new facility for local parents. Becoming a new parent is often a daunting prospect, which can lead to feelings of isolation. Coffeetots aims to ease those anxieties and provide parents with a warm welcome.”
Further information can be found at Coffeetots’ website www.coffeetotsplaycafe.com