Keynsham Library cafe open new chapter for Pam, 81

A CAFÉ run by 81-year-old Pam Sales is proving a hit with visitors to Keynsham Library.

The library asked her to run the café after the previous one closed.

She said: “I went to the library because I wanted to use the computer to refresh my health and safety certificate, and they said ‘you’re just the person we need’.”

Pam’s Pantry is open on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday each week from 10am to 2pm, as well as Saturdays when the monthly farmers’ market is held on Market Walk, outside the library’s entrance.

Although it’s unpredictable which days will be busiest, the café is in demand when mums bring their tots to the library for Baby Bounce and Rhyme Times on Tuesdays and Storytime on Thursdays.

In running the café, Pam can draw on her experience in baking and making meals as a volunteer for St John’s Church.

The library café does not have cooking facilities, so Pam’s menu consists mainly of crumpets, toasted teacakes, tea, coffee and cake, some of which is home-made.

She runs the café by herself, saying: “The kitchen is beautifully laid out and not very large. I can manage it myself without worry.”

Pam praised the library’s manager and staff for their support.

“They go over and above to help me, putting my board outside when the café is open.”

One reason she opened the café is because she wanted a fresh challenge.

“I’ve always dealt with lots of people. It’s nice to do something different and meet new people, but it hasn’t taken me away from the church because I love it.”

She added: “I get customers from all walks of life – the elderly and people on their own. They can sit down and there’s no time limit. It’s very informal and friendly, a welcoming place for people to come.”