ON a standard Saturday afternoon, almost 800 shots of coffee are sold at the newest spot on Leigh’s Broadway.

Since opening in August, Corner Club has become something of a mecca for artists, work-from-homers, ladies that lunchers and pretty much everyone else in town.

But who are the people behind the smart exterior and scrumptious dishes… and what was the vision for the café?

It transpires Corner Club was designed and created by partners Jack Morris and Phoebe Parry. The café is run by them, alongside Phoebe’s sister Madeleine Parry who bakes the cakes, and their manager Stuart Allen.

So, what made you want to open a coffee shop, I ask Phoebe?

“We have loved watching the food and drink industry explode over the last few years, especially in London where there are hundreds of independent, stylish and forward-thinking places for locals to hangout,” she explains.

“We have always been excited over a good coffee shop, restaurant or hotel, and knew it was something we had to do ourselves one day. Leigh is so close to London, but yet the real London buzz doesn’t seem to have landed here yet, and we wanted to be a part of getting that ball rolling in our home town.

“We took over the previous business in August. We spent a few months learning the ropes and getting to know the customers and what they really wanted from the cafe. In October, we closed for five days and completely refurbished the place giving it a new lease of life as Corner Club.”

Echo: Corner Club

How are they making it stand out from the many other cafes in Leigh?

“We hope that our passion for not only the food and coffee, but for the cafe as a whole, comes through the moment customers step through the door,” says Phoebe.

“We love getting to know people and making them feel welcome whether they come once a year or twice a day. We love music, art, design and these play a big part in the overall atmosphere of the place. We wanted the space to feel cosy and stylish, somewhere you want to sit all weekend!”

How did you come up with the name?

“We very nearly called it Tart and Grind,” laughs Phoebe. “But we didn’t want to scare off the existing customers!

“After weeks, months, of brainstorming with our family, we were having a Sunday roast one day and my mum shouted Corner Club! That was it, decision made. It just worked as it was so simple, and open; it could be whatever we wanted it to be without any connotations toward a particular offering. It was simply about the space and the people.”

With things like coffee time sketch club, its becoming more than just a coffee shop… what’s the thinking behind that?

Echo: Corner Club

“We want to be a club where there’s more than just coffee-drinking going on. We’re members of Soho House where they hold daily events, talks and clubs and we love that there’s always something interesting going on. We wanted to create a similar concept.

“Mark Bradford who runs Coffee Time Sketch is a family friend and local artist, and his family are contributing to Corner Club in more ways than one. His wife Vanessa bakes our incredible vegan cakes, and their gorgeous daughter Lydia works behind the counter when she’s not busy being an actress.”

And who does the cooking and baking at the club?

“Jack Morris and head chef Keir Black run the compact kitchen at Corner Club and have just launched our first proper menu for all day brunch and snacks. Madeleine does the baking, with Vanessa Bradford taking charge of everything vegan-friendly!”

Is there a dish that is proving most popular?

“Our cakes fly off the counter, fast. Maddy’s banana bread is a popular one, alongside our delicious vegan Bakewell tarts,” says Phoebe.

The cage has recently got an alcohol license, what difference will that make?

Echo: Corner Club

“It will be great in the summer,” enthuses Phoebe. “Watching customers sit outside with a nice cold glass of wine or beer and enjoying our food. Oh, and Bloody Mary’s on a Sunday should go down a treat with the brunch-ers!

“The plan is to open later into the evenings as nowhere else in Leigh offers a coffee shop environment by night. We love the idea of being a welcoming space for those who don’t want to go to the pub, (and those who do!) We also want to host supper clubs and a few events.”

So that’s what’s next for the café, but what does she know about the history of the site, I wonder?

“It used to be a solicitors, and the name is still imprinted on our windows,” reveals Phoebe. “When the windows steam up, you can clearly see ‘Francis Thatcher Solicitors’’s kind of spooky. If it had been a cocktail bar I think we’d have called it Thatchers Club.”

Echo: Corner Club