Battle of the Beverages

Ever wondered where best to take refuge when you simply cannot face a two-hour lecture in a windowless lecture theatre in Roger Stevens? Wonder no more; we explore the best spots to fulfil your campus caffeine cravings.


Balcony is the first and only student-led enterprise on campus. They proudly state that the venture was ‘conceived, designed and managed by Leeds students for Leeds students’ and indeed, the café has a friendly atmosphere because of it. With scenic views over the refectory, Balcony does slightly lack in ambience but, with plenty of plug sockets dotted about, it is a great place to combine a snack with some uni work. If you are an early bird and can make it in before 10am, they do an excellent deal offering to add a pastry to any hot drink for an extra 50p.


This is not strictly speaking ‘on-campus’ but if you’re feeling adventurous enough to cross the busy Woodhouse lane then make you sure you check out Opposite Cafe. Situated (you guessed it) opposite the university, this cosy café serves up delicious brownies, salads, soups and some of the tastiest coffee in the vicinity.

Laidlaw Café Nero

Conveniently located for those who wish to take a break from their studies in the Laidlaw library, this outlet of Café Nero is a reliable option. Their drinks are slightly pricier than some of the other campus outlets, but if you are looking for a late night beverage Nero also holds the accolade of being the latest open café on campus. Open until an impressive 9pm, if you’re gearing up for an all-nighter it’s the perfect place.

The Edit Room

This café had a rocky start: originally conceived as ‘The Book Club’, it changed its name following a dispute with Hyde Park Book Club. It has since relaunched as ‘The Edit Room’ and has experienced plain sailing ever since. Its delicious selection of cakes, the stylish décor and the comfy chairs make it a top choice, while the location at the bottom of the Edward Boyle Library is its biggest selling point. A small Americano will set you back £1.80, while soup and a roll will cost you £2.

Common Ground

Lurking within the depths of the union is this pastel-hued hangout. Previously known as Hidden Cafe, the primary colours of this radical rebrand give you the nostalgic feeling of being back in primary school. Although it is underground it doesn’t lack brightness, it has an abundance of comfy sofas and serves its beverages in proper mugs rather than plastic cups: environmentally friendly and classy. They have a selection of toasties and bagels from £1.50 as well as croissants, brioche, soups and stews all around the £2.00 mark. Plus, they always have vegan and gluten-free cake on offer.


Martha Sanders