Our journey began over 20 years ago, way back in 2001 when we launched as the 'Cambridge Coffee Company'. Our shop was situated in the back of an old bike shed on Hills Road in Cambridge with just 1 member of staff; our CEO Kevin McIntyre, we quickly expanded into a bike shop and opened 3 new stores.
In 2007 we decided to break away from the High Street to concentrate on the outdoor leisure market. We sold the Cambridge Coffee Company and formed AE Catering LTD- named after our children Alfie and Esme and Ava Effie. Taking the plunge we pledged to only invest in sites situated exclusively in country parks, woods and forests thus our slogan was born...Great Coffee for the Great Outdoors! We are proud and fortunate enough to inhabit 4 Forestry England sites and 1 Parks Trust site.
In 2016 we rebranded and thus 'Grounds Cafes' was born! In July 2022 we opened our newest site meaning we now currently have 9 established sites across the UK Midlands. These are...Milton Country Park, Nowton Park, Fineshade Wood, Cannock Chase Forest, Hicks Lodge, Salcey Forest, Emberton Country Park, Howe Park Wood & Abbey Gardens! Our company kitchen is based in Cambridge where our talented chefs prepare all our homemade cakes, soups, stews and gelato in house that are delivered fresh to our sites each week!
Here at Grounds we are always looking to move towards a greener, more sustainable way of living. We make all our best efforts to minimise single use waste and we work hard to close the gap in recycling. All our spent coffee grounds are repurposed into BioBean ‘coffee logs’- burnable logs that we use to fuel our wood burners. We also make all of our homemade gelato using machines powered by the solar panels on our roof! All of our packaging is recyclable and we also aim to be single use cup free by 2024! This means we offer our customers a discount on their drinks when they bring their own reusable cups and we plan to roll out our own in leui of takeaway cups very soon!