Fri. Mar 22nd, 2024

Best 5 coffee shops to study at in Kingston

By Alice M Carter Dec 10, 2019
Why not study at a coffee shop this winter? Photo: Michael Steiner

Christmas is always a difficult time when it comes to studying not to mention Kingston University Penrhyn Road library closure on top so what can are the alternatives?

Especially as it is not always possible to get home for the festivities and with the library closed from December 14 to January 5, it does not look good.

A Kingston University spokesperson said:“The University has regularly opened Kingston Hill library between Christmas and New Year and is currently finalising staffing arrangements with a view to opening on 29, 30 and 31 December, from 10am to 5pm, during this time, pop-up library space will be provided in the Main Building and Galsworthy Building at Penrhyn Road, which will include study spaces and computers. Library opening hours are available on My Kingston and full details of the pop-up library spaces and Kingston Hill opening hours will be made available to students soon.”

But at Penrhyn Road, the Christmas closure will allow the transfer of stock for the opening of the Town House opening January 6 2020.

One obvious option is to get yourself down to a local coffee shop where you can connect to WiFi stay warm and have on-tap hot drinks. But not all coffee shops support long-term stays, the more commercial ones will not let you reside there for several hours without the purchase of one Christmas latte and a cinnamon cookie. These are the top five in Kingston that cater to having plug sockets, good wifi and are willing to let students study as long as they need.


Fortunella at 8 Apple Market, Kingston upon Thames KT1 1JE (very central to town) Owner’s assistant, Marcela Rothera said: “We have about 20-30 students study in here each week and we have a good reliable Wi-Fi and 2 tables with plugs. Always happy to arrange tables to suit groups as well. With lattes starting at £2.70, espressos £2.00 and cappuccinos from £2.70, we usually have more students studying during autumn and spring”.


Waterstones café in the Bentall Centre not only has Kingston University students studying there but working there also.

Kingston University Student Max Arnoot said: “I work in Waterstones café, and there never fails to have a few people in there working, especially Monday to Friday but even on the weekend it’s a great place to study.”


Kingston University pofessor of film and cultural studies Will Brooker, who has lived in Kingston for over 13 years suggested Local Hero at 22 Thames St, Kingston upon Thames, Surrey, KT1 1PE.

Nihad Pashalich a barista at Local Hero said: “We have customer WiFi throughout but for the number of students popping by I would say quite a few but mostly they come for a coffee or a quick.

“Our pricing is I would say in the middle of the coffee market. Latte costs around 3 pounds, cappuccino is the same, and the espresso is around 2 pounds.”


Brooker also recommended the department of coffee and social affairs, nearby at 22 Thames St, Kingston upon Thames KT1 1PE. He said: “All these coffee shops are all more expensive than coffee on campus but I like getting away from work and immersing myself in the culture of an independent cafe. I would never sit and read in the library — I love the library for getting books and DVDs but to me, it just doesn’t have the right atmosphere. There’s no music and I prefer to watch the lives of local people while I read, rather than be surrounded by students and staff — the library feels like being in a classroom, and a coffee shop feels like being out in the community.”


Thomas Sales, a 24-year-old mathematics student, suggests studying at the Marks and Spencer cafe. He said: “The cafe in Marks and Spencer in Kingston which I spent a lot of time in following receiving £100 in M&S vouchers for switching to their bank.

“The cafe is an excellent place to eat in, with plenty of places to hide, it is also quiet.”

He added: “I suffer from Asperger syndrome which, among other things, has the effect of anxiety. I cannot make any use of any of the libraries, whatsoever, as I constantly feel like I’m being watched and that’s before we get into the actual library itself (claustrophobic, humid, noisy – and that’s just the silent study area). I am unconvinced I will be unable to use the Town House either when it opens on January 6, but I’m planning on giving it a go.”

Kingston has a lot of great places to hook up to free WiFi, chill-out and get those assignments written don’t freeze in your flat drinking Tesco’s instant, visit one of the above just remember your charger and earbuds.

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