REVEALED: Introducing the YEP Cafe of the Year 2017

Yorkshire Evening Post Cafe of the Year. Winners Cafe Nicole's in Morley,friom left, Sophie Gibbon, Nicola Copley and Alana Spencer. 13th April 2017. Picture Jonathan Gawthorpe

THe results are in - and today the Yorkshire Evening Post can reveal that Cafe Nicole’s is your Cafe of the Year 2017.

And it’s a triple whammy for Morley, with the Annie Street establishment joined by Sue’s Kitchen and Caffe Moments, both on Queen Street in the town, in the top three.

Yorkshire Evening Post Cafe of the Year. YEP Editor Hannah Thaxter presents Ian and Sue Swain and their staff at Sue's Kitchen in Morley, with their second place. 13th April 2017. Picture Jonathan Gawthorpe

Cafe Nicole’s Nicola Copley has run the winning eaterie for the last eight years.

The 41-year-old said she owed her success to her customers and her team.

“I’m absolutely overjoyed that I’m the winner out of so many cafes in Leeds,” she said.

“It’s such an amazing achievement that my staff and I have worked so hard for and I’m truly over the moon.

“We go off customers’ feedback and that’s what’s kept us going as I’m always looking to improve and take my business forward.”

Runner-up Sue’s Kitchen - which won third place in 2016 - is owned by husband and wife duo Ian and Sue Swain, who champion quality, healthy, homemade cooking.

“Sue’s an absolutely brilliant cook,” said Ian, who gained his customer service skills from 33 years of work in the banking industry.

“It’s proper homemade food. We get a lot of young families coming in and the main reason is because we don’t do things like chicken nuggets or chips, it’s all healthy.”

Yorkshire Evening Post Cafe of the Year. YEP Editor Hannah Thaxter presents Marina Waymouth and her staff at Cafe Moments in Morley, with their third place. 13th April 2017. Picture Jonathan Gawthorpe

When they entered the Cafe of the Year contest, the couple decided to raise money for Dementia UK at the same time by asking those who wanted to keep their copy of the YEP after filling in the voting form to make a small donation to the charity, raising £216.

Ian, 57, said: “It feels really good, to raise money for charity and then also to win and we’ve done better than last time when we came third so that’s absolutely brilliant.”

In third place is Marina Waymouth, owner of Caffe Moments.

The 46-year-old wasn’t local to the area when she first took over the cafe a year ago but she said that she soon felt part of the community.

Yorkshire Evening Post Cafe of the Year. YEP Editor Hannah Thaxter presents Nicola Copley and her staff at Cafe Nicole's in Morley, with their winners trophy. 13th April 2017. Picture Jonathan Gawthorpe

She said: “I was a bit worried that the customers wouldn’t like the change but they embraced it and they took me under their wing and made me feel like an accepted part of the area.

“There’s a real community spirit in my coffee shop.

“People have got to know each other here and now to see them pull their tables together and chat, it’s just really heartwarming.”

All the winners said they were delighted to discover that the top places all went to establishments in Morley.

First place Nicola said: “I’m so happy for the runners up, especially with them being from Morley.”

And Caffe Moments owner, Marina, added: “To have first, second and third place go to places in Morley can only be good for the town itself.

“Hopefully it will bring more people into the town centre and help all local businesses as ultimately we all benefit. You’ve got to help each other out.”

More from News