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Little Italy Gets Bigger!

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Simon Keeley and Cathrine Tjore

Most residents of Haddenham and many rail commuters from a wide area around the village will have enjoyed a fine coffee in Little Italy. The coffee shop now has a very much expanded area in the newly extended Haddenham & Thame Parkway station to complement its delightful little premises in Fort End.

We were keen to learn more about this much loved business so we asked owners Simon Keeley and Cathrine Tjore to offer us a potted history. Here's what Simon had to say:

"Little Italy Espresso Bar started small. Very small in fact!

With a rather battered old Vespa van and an old 1960s "pull lever" espresso machine, Cathrine stood outside Haddenham & Thame Parkway in snow, sleet, wind, rain. Serving great coffee in often hostile conditions gained her great respect from commuters and leisure travellers alike, and many still mention it today!

After a year exposed to the elements Little Italy Espresso Bar moved inside the newly refurbished station (2005). From these humble beginnings we now have four branches, Haddenham, Wendover, Bicester and opening in Leamington Spa later this year.

Our culture is simple. Fun, fast and friendly. You can't be successful by just making good coffee, its all about the people. Little Italy Espresso Bar has great staff and Cathrine & I like to lead from the front.

We also involve customers in our culture and publish FIX, Little Italy Espresso Bar's own magazine. The first in our industry to do this, it is all created in-house by staff. Local business and customers feature throughout, the only thing we don't do is print it! Pick one up at any of our branches...it's free!"

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