Man queues all night to be cafe’s first cus­tomer

South Wales Echo - - NEWS - CHRIS PYKE chris.pyke@waleson­

A MAN who queued from mid­night for the open­ing of Wales’ first branch of Tim Hor­tons has been re­warded with free cof­fee for a year.

Sebastian Rob­bins, 26, started queu­ing out­side the cof­fee shop on Queen Street, Cardiff, in the early hours of yes­ter­day to en­sure he was the first in the line.

Mr Rob­bins, who’s from Brid­gend but lives in the cap­i­tal, had never ac­tu­ally had a Tim Hor­tons cof­fee be­fore but has fam­ily in Canada and has heard a lot about the brand.

He said: “I took a selfie and then sent it to the Face­book page to show that I was here. I’ve got fam­ily in Canada so I’ve heard about Tim Hor­tons a lot but I’ve never ac­tu­ally tried it my­self and then I heard there was a year’s sup­ply of free cof­fee and I couldn’t miss an op­por­tu­nity.”

He said a cou­ple of women did join him in the early hours – but he thinks they might have un­der­es­ti­mated the cold, or been “half-cut”, and they left af­ter 10 min­utes.

Peo­ple were seen queu­ing down Queen Street yes­ter­day morn­ing for the open­ing and free break­fasts were given to the first 100 cus­tomers through the door.

The branch is in the build­ing for­merly oc­cu­pied by Foot Locker, and a sec­ond unit is ex­pected to open by the end of the year on Work­ing Street.

Kevin Hy­des, chief fi­nance and com­mer­cial of­fi­cer for Tim Hor­tons in the UK, said many more venues are an­tic­i­pated for the fu­ture.

Tim Hor­tons was founded in Canada by its name­sake, a pro­fes­sional ice hockey player, who wanted to cre­ate a space where ev­ery­one would feel at home. It is said that more than 5.3 mil­lion Cana­di­ans, ap­prox­i­mately 15% of the pop­u­la­tion, visit the café daily.

Across Great Bri­tain, Tim Hor­tons will of­fer an ex­ten­sive and var­ied menu of drinks, which in­clude Tim Hor­tons sig­na­ture cof­fee, espres­sobased bev­er­ages, hot choco­late, French Vanilla and clas­sic frozen Iced Cap­p­drink, as well as baked goods, break­fast and lunch items made from qual­ity in­gre­di­ents.

Vis­i­tors can also en­joy to Tim Hor­tons’ sig­na­ture Tim­bits, bite-sized dough­nuts in a va­ri­ety of flavours.

Speak­ing ahead of the open­ing in Cardiff, Mr Hy­des said: “When we de­cided to bring the busi­ness to the UK we spent a lot of time think­ing about places to bring the brand to, and quite hon­estly we were look­ing at places that matched some of the spirit and the com­mu­nity that has been suc­cess­ful for Tim Hor­tons in Canada. There were a num­ber of places that felt a much closer affin­ity to that, Cardiff be­ing one of them.”

He added: “We wanted to en­sure, that to be suc­cess­ful, we were tak­ing the brand to places we felt peo­ple had the most affin­ity and the most ex­cite­ment for the brand. What has given us con­fi­dence is that once we have made those an­nounce­ments the rip­ple ef­fect we have seen through so­cial me­dia, the sup­port we have re­ceived and the ap­pre­ci­a­tion has been over­whelm­ing.”

Sebastian Rob­bins, 26, was the first cus­tomer through the doors of the new Tim Hor­tons cof­fee shop on Queen Street, Cardiff

Tim Hor­tons opened yes­ter­day morn­ing in the cap­i­tal

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