It is extremely rare to find buildings on a bridge.
Stokes on High Bridge in the centre of Lincoln is one of these rare examples. The road is the Roman Ermine Street, the bridge is Norman, the origin of the building dates back to medieval buildings on the bridge.
Stokes of Lincoln is a family business established in 1902, specialising in freshly roasted coffees and teas. From our early days we have occupied the fine 16th Century building, built on the medieval High Bridge spanning the river Witham, the only one of its kind in Great Britain.Our retail shop situated on the ground floor offers a wide variety of speciality teas, freshly roasted coffees & gifts. Our knowledgeable staff will be happy to help you choose a coffee or tea to suit your palate.You can enjoy a cup of coffee, a light snack or a good old fashioned home cooked meal, in charming surroundings, whilst observing the hustle & bustle of the High Street beneath you. Sit back and watch the people, the boats and of course, the swans pass by …
As you walk in the door, a very old shop, to one side a modern coffee shop. Up on first floor and second floor, very old, as would have been when Stokes opened in its present location over 75 years ago. Amazing old fires with copper canopies. Each floor has its own kitchen. On the stairs photos and paintings.
Back down in the shop, old coffee roaster which is occasionally used, delicious looking cakes, teas and coffees to buy.
When I walked in, the ground floor coffee shop was all but empty. To my surprise, first floor packed, by the time I got back down, the little coffee shop was packed.
It is difficult to see why anyone would wish to drink what masquerades as coffee in Costa or Starbucks when they have Stokes. Stokes is a little more expensive, but then you are paying for quality and atmosphere, something you would never get in Costa or tax dodger Starbucks.
Stokes supply their coffee to indie coffee shops, those that serve quality coffee that is.
I had hoped mid-morning to see coffee being roasted but they had roasted Monday and had finished by mid-morning.
At the side of Stokes a narrow alley, stone steps lead down to the river. Follow along the River Witham and it leads to the Brayford. An area that could have been very pleasant, had the old mills and warehouses been retained and renovated, but sadly destroyed by greed, inappropriate development and a council lacking in vision.
Black is the Colour by Helen Howe mentions Stokes on High Bridge.
If visiting Lincoln, Stokes is a must to visit. Then through the Stonebow, up the High Street, The Strait, a diversion to The Collection (Stokes run a coffee bar in The Collection with occasional live music), up Steep Hill, Castle Square, Lincoln Castle, Lincoln Cathedral, Bailgate.