New beginnings for Royal Blind School café

New Beginnings Cafe opens at Royal Blind School.

New Beginnings Cafe opens at Royal Blind School.

The Royal Blind School has opened a café run by the pupils at the recently re-developed campus in Morningside, Edinburgh.

The pupil run café has been running for over 20 years in different venues. As part of the re-development of the Royal Blind School in Morningside, an area within the campus has been renovated to accommodate the enterprise, with indoor and outdoor seating areas.

Young people with a visual impairment can face significant additional challenges when they leave school. The café is run by the pupils to provide them with general essential life skills and responsibilities outside of the classroom.

The School has a ‘can do’ attitude and the café echoes this ethos as it is all about a huge sense of community whilst learning and developing life skills. Pupils are taught practicalities such as cooking and cleaning but also working tills, time management and maintaining a high level of customer service.

Davina Shiell, Marketing Manager at Royal Blind, said:

“The café has a unique innovative ordering service using Braille cards in a box labelled choices box containing pictures of scones, cakes, coffee etc. and a box labelled orders. The young people come to your table and take the orders box, open it and are able to read the order in Braille giving them independence in the cafe. The young people also serve the food and drinks and clear your table.”

The café is loved by pupils, staff, family and friends who would highly recommend the legendary fresh scones and cakes. The café aims to open its doors to the local community in the near future.

Royal Blind is a registered charity that operates services for blind and visually impaired people throughout the UK. Find out more at

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