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J. Lyons & Co.


There were roughly 200 teashops, each with a shop at the front for selling bakery items and inside one or more cafeteria-type counters for hot meals and beverages.


Each shop had a code number for quick reference. The first was A - Piccadilly. The code ran through from A to Z (which was Kings Cross) and then AA to ZZ followed by A3 - Z9. Provincial and coastal shops had a double letter viz HE - Bournemouth. 

In the immediate post WWII years the teashops were bustling with customers necessitating the installation of queue barriers to control the line waiting to enter the cafeteria. Ten years later the customers started to fall off as the building of competing restaurants surged.

A large cup of tea at a Lyons teashop cost 2.1/2d (old pennies) in the 1950s.

The Head Office of Teashops was at Orchard House near Selfriges in Oxford Street and the Directors of Teashops were Julian Salmon, Felix Salmon and Alan Jenkins (employee director).

New Margate Teashop Roof Terrace

Types of Restaurant

Lyons Teashops 1894-1981

The Trocadero 1896-1965

The Throgmorton Restaurant 1900-1996

The Popular Cafe & the State Restaurant 1904-1949

Lyons Cornerhouses 1909-1977 (includes Maison Lyons)

Angel Cafe Restaurant 1921-1960

Wimpy 1953-1976

Steak Houses 1961-1988

Dunkin' Donuts 1989-present

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