Cafe undergoes rebrand to become ‘homely and cosy’ corner for the Northampton community

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“We wanted to start fresh and make it our own”

A cafe has undergone a rebrand to become a “homely and cosy” corner for the Northampton community.

The Courtyard Cafe, in Kent Road, formerly existed as part of St Crispins Retail Village as the Tick Tock Cafe Bar.

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Offering freshly ground coffee, homemade cakes and biscuits, and both breakfast and lunch options, the venue reopened to customers after a four-day makeover at the end of July as The Courtyard Cafe.

The Courtyard Cafe, in Kent Road, formerly existed as part of St Crispins Retail Village as the Tick Tock Cafe Bar.The Courtyard Cafe, in Kent Road, formerly existed as part of St Crispins Retail Village as the Tick Tock Cafe Bar.
The Courtyard Cafe, in Kent Road, formerly existed as part of St Crispins Retail Village as the Tick Tock Cafe Bar.

Partners Sarah Smith and Josh Wilks took over the business at the end of March and Sarah described their journey so far as a “whirlwind”.

They took the business on, with its former branding, as a new venture doing something they had never done before – but had always wanted to.

When asked what made the pair want to rebrand to The Courtyard Cafe, Sarah said: “We wanted to start fresh and make it our own.

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“We wanted something simple, that was easy to remember, and we are in the courtyard of the retail village.

The Courtyard Cafe team.The Courtyard Cafe team.
The Courtyard Cafe team.

“We’ve given it more of a homely and cosy feel. A nice space where customers can sit on the sofa with a throw, a coffee and a book.”

The aim was to create a welcoming spot for food and drink that does not break the bank, which customers can visit in groups and it is accessible to all.

As TikTok is such a popular social media platform, the former name of the cafe was so saturated online and they made the change to stand out.

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The whole building has been redecorated in a “relaxing sage green” and everything has been softened, with a more natural feel and lots of plants.

The aim was to create a welcoming spot for food and drink that does not break the bank, which customers can visit in groups and it is accessible to all.The aim was to create a welcoming spot for food and drink that does not break the bank, which customers can visit in groups and it is accessible to all.
The aim was to create a welcoming spot for food and drink that does not break the bank, which customers can visit in groups and it is accessible to all.

Sarah says it has been “really lovely to see” a build up of regular customers, some of whom visit several times a week.

The pair have now changed their attention to the outside of the building in the hope it will draw in more new customers.

“It’s a lovely bit of Crispins,” said Sarah. “But you wouldn’t know it was there. We wanted to make it more eye-catching.”

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The owners were pleased to have only shut for four days of hard work turning the cafe into what it is today.

Though there are still finishing touches to be put in place, the pair are proud of the progress they have made.

The biggest challenge they have had to overcome is “learning a whole new business” as it is so different from what they have done before.

“We’re having to learn very quickly,” said Sarah.

Looking to the future of the business, Sarah and Josh want to continue building on what they have achieved so far as they know there is “a lot more potential”.

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Not only do they want to welcome in and host more events, such as baby showers and birthday celebrations, they want to give back to the community too.

Whether it is children who need extra support with food during the summer holidays, or homeless individuals, Sarah says giving back is in the pipeline for the future.

To find out more about The Courtyard Cafe, visit their Facebook page here.