Moonbow Jakes - shock news

A couple of years ago, when we started looking for a new place to live, we didn't give Brockley a second thought. We only knew it as "those two roundabouts" on the way to other places. However, in desperation, we went to visit a place on Upper Brockley Road, and discovered a whole new world hidden away. Then, we found Moonbow Jakes and decided that Brockley was more than just some nice houses, it was a place to live.

So, it came as a shock when we started hearing rumours that it was up for sale. Today, however, we received this confirmation from John, the current owner:

Nick, in answer to the rumours of my imminent departure from Moonbow Jakes, I can confirm I am in the final throws of passing on the business to four musicians who, I believe, plan to keep the fundamentals the same while making some minor improvements. As with all sales, there is a possibility that something outside our control may scupper the deal, although this appears unlikely.

Taking that things all go to plan, we are holding a series of events over December including a poetry evening, which kicks off with Brockley resident and one of the UK's most prominent pianist, Julian Jacobson, trying out some new material on Monday evening (3rd December). I would like to thank everyone who have loyally supported Moonbow Jakes in Brockley, New Cross and Catford over the last ten years and invite them to write any comments in a special book in Brockley, on our blog at or they can record a message of how Moonbow Jakes has impacted on their life or community by visiting the shop. People wishing to take a photographic record are also asked to share their pictures by posting copies to our site.

Thanks to Brockley Central for your unstinting support and I wish you all well for the future.

John and Moonbow Jakes Coffee Bar x

John added that the new owners plan to preserve the character of the bar, although of course, they're bound to want to stamp their ideas on the place in some ways. He also said that they've enjoyed a record year this year and that it had always been his plan to move on at some point - so it's reassuring to hear that Brockley is capable of sustaining places like Moonbows - his account certainly tallies with the fact that it seems to be full whatever time of night or day we pass.

John will be a loss to the area and, before he goes, we hope to persuade him to share his unique perspective on Brockley.