Food and Friends

There are lots of great places that you can visit on your own or with friends around Newcastle. Some community organisations offer special discounts for older people and others provide a tailored service such as lunch clubs where you can socialise with other like minded people. Please see below for more information on places where you can eat out in Newcastle:

Coffee mornings and Tea clubs


The NewBridge Project runs Community Coffee Mornings on Mondays 11am to 12.30pm at the Shieldfield Centre.

Lifting Neighbourhoods Together at Building Futures East run a weekly community coffee morning in Walker 10:30am to 12:30pm

Pottery Bank Community Centre runs a Brew, Bite and Bingo session on Mondays


St Martin’s Centre run a tea club on a Tuesday from 1.30pm  to 3.30pm for older people alongside Bingo

Age UK Gateshead run a friendship group in Fenham for people over the age of 50. They meet for a cuppa and a chat every 2 weeks on Tuesdays. It’s free to attend. There is a cost for your food and drinks.

Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums run a free drop-in Museum Social every first Tuesday of the month across their museums and art galleries. There will be free tea, coffee and refreshments on the go and you’ll be able to chat to museum staff.


Elders Council has the Mile Castle social and cup of tea sessions, 10am to 12pm on the third Wednesday of every month at the Mile Castle on the West Road.

Age UK Gateshead run a friendship group in Fawdon for people over the age of 50. They meet for a cuppa and a chat every 2 weeks on Wednesdays. It’s free to attend. There is a cost for your food and drinks. Contact Ruth Dodds for more information [email protected]


Newcastle U3A has a membership Coffee Morning every 3rd Friday from 10.30 am to 12 noon at St John’s Church Hall, Grainger Street, Newcastle. £1 entry entitles you to a free tea/coffee and home baked cake.  New members welcome.


St Matthew’s church, Dinnington runs a coffee morning every second Saturday at 10.30 am for one hour

St Andrew’s, Newgate Street runs a charity coffee morning every Saturday 9.30 am to 1 pm. All welcome

Evening meals

FoodCycle Westgate offers a free, cooked meal on Thursdays at 6.45pm. Everyone is welcome.

FoodCycle Byker offers a free, cooked meal at 7 pm on Thursdays.  Everyone welcome.

FoodCycle  Benwell offers a free, cooked meal at 6.30 pm on Mondays.  Everyone welcome.

Day services for older people

You can pay to attend these services yourself or you may be eligible for help to attend from the council, if you have care needs. Anyone of a pensionable age who can make their own way to the centre is welcome to attend. Contact the services below for more information.

The Grange Centre provides day services to older people every week day.  You can stay for half a day or a full day. Lunch is provided. There are a range of activities on offer such as quizzes, crafts, cookery and bingo, as well as entertainment from choirs, guest speakers and regular trips out. You may also be referred by the Council for support.

St Anthony of Padua provides day services for older people every week day. Transport to and from the centre is available.  You can stay for half a day or a full day. Lunch is provided. There are activities and entertainment available, as well as hairdressing and other therapy sessions. You may also be referred by the Council.

Community Cafes

Blakelaw Community Centre and Cafe is open 7 days a week for low cost food and drinks. They also run a Community Market, library, nursery and social activities.

Brunswick Methodist church is open for coffee on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays 10.45am to 1.15 pm

Big River Bakery is a community bakery and cafe in Shieldfield. They bake and sell fresh artisan bread, pies, pastries and cakes. Pay what you feel for food on Wednesdays. They’re a Winter Wellbeing Hub where you can spend time with a hot drink and keep warm in the city.

Chapel House and District Community Association (CHADCA) has a coffee shop open Mondays to Fridays

The Chatty Cafe Scheme includes: The Owl Tree Children’s Cafe in Kenton, Costa in Gosforth, Costa in Kingston Park

Cornerstone Benwell run Corner Kitchen Community café open Wednesday and Thursday between 9am and 2pm. Serving very low cost food.

The Lemington Centre Maximo’s Deli serves refreshments, snacks and light lunches on Mondays to Fridays, 8am to 3pm (verified)

The Wicker Chair Coffee House and Bistro is run in partnership JET, a local charity. They serve breakfasts, lunches, snacks and refreshments from Monday to Saturday.

West End Women and Girls Centre open a Community Bakery Monday to Friday

The Magic Hat Cafe  combines a great, accessible eating experience with raising awareness on food waste. They are open Thursday to Sunday 10am to 4pm in Newcastle City Centre.

St James’s and St Basil’s church has a cafe that is open on Saturday from 10.30 am to 1pm

The Mercy Hub is a drop in centre with a café for those in need which is open on a Monday 10am to 1pm.

Newcastle Cathedral has Café 16 which is run with the St Oswin Project and ex offenders will be supported and trained towards qualifications and employment. Open Tuesdays to Saturdays, 10am to 4pm.

Pottery Bank Community Centre has a community cafe open Monday to Friday.

Lunch and leisure clubs


West End Women and Girls Centre run a Community Bakery and Winter Warmers sessions on Mondays.

Marys place at The Mercy Hub is a drop in centre with a café for those in need which is open on a Monday 10 am to 1 pm.

Fenwicks Friendly Folk meet up regularly at Fenwick’s The Terrace Restaurant twice a month. They also arrange outings and birthday celebrations.


Hand in Hand run a Lunch Club at Trinity Church, Station Road, Wallsend NE28 8SA on Tuesdays from 12 noon to 2.30pm.

St James’s Church, Benwell runs a lunch club on a Tuesday.  Ring or email to let them know you are interested.

Denton Youth and Community Project run lunch clubs on Tuesdays at 12pm. Contact them to let them know you’d like to attend.

The Chatty Cafe Online on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays


FoodCycle Walker runs a free lunch club on a Wednesday, 12.30 pm at  Monkchester Community Centre. No need to book, just turn up. All welcome.

Newcastle Deaf Centre run a lunch club on Wednesdays for anyone,11 to 2 pm. Pay as you please cafe,


South Mountain Older Peoples Chinese Group on Thursday 12 noon till 2pm from February 2022


Walker Parish Church Young at Heart Club for people over 50. It’s a friendly support service. A place to meet and socialise with a quiz, bingo and lunch. 12pm to 2pm on Fridays. Ran by Chain Reaction and YMCA Newcastle

St. George’s Church, Jesmond run the Friday Cafe which offers an opportunity for all age groups to drop in for tea, coffee, homemade cakes and scones. They especially welcome people affected in any way by a dementia.

Holy Spirit Church, Denton Lunch Club on the last Friday of the Month 12.30pm to 4pm. A 2 course meal and hot drinks are available. Costs £4. Call to book


Newcastle College’s Chefs’ Academy and Bistro trains chefs and you can arrange to have lunch or dinner with friends.

Dementia and memory cafes

Silverline Memories run a weekly dementia cafe and many similar dementia activities

The NewBridge Project runs a memory cafe on the first Thursday of the month at The Forum Cafe, Shieldfield.

St George’s Café on Fridays 10am to 12pm in the Church Hall which welcomes everyone and those effected by dementia

Search  run regular Memory Cafe’s and memory tea sessions for people and their carers affected by dementia or memory loss

St Martins Centre have a memory tea session for people and their carers affected by dementia or memory loss.

St Vincent’s Dementia Group on the last Monday of the month 2pm to 4pm. They offer free activities, socialising and refreshments. All welcome

Read our Dementia article for more information on Dementia Friendly activities and support groups.

Learning disability and autism groups

Skills for People with Pass it on Parents, holds a parent and carer coffee and social group at St Martin’s Community Centre. Check their Facebook page.  Wednesday 10.30am to 12pm.  Also on Tuesdays at their own location from 10.30am to 12pm.

Read more on services in Newcastle for people with learning disabilities and autism support services.

LGBTQ+ groups

Age UK Gateshead in Newcastle run a friendship group for older LGBTQ+ people over 55 years old. It takes places every 2 weeks in Newcastle City Centre. Come along for a cuppa, chat and meet new people. Contact [email protected] for more information.

Men’s Groups

There is a weekly Men’s Pie Club which runs in a variety of venues across the city.  They bring men together to meet new friends and chat to fellow pie-lovers – to learn, cook, share, sell and to eat great healthy pies. You don’t have to be able to cook. They meet at:

Online cafes

The Chatty Cafe Online on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays

Tea Dances

The Jenian School of Dancing has 50/50 dances which include tea and coffee for a small charge.

Tea Parties

Reengage offer monthly afternoon tea parties for people over 75 who live alone. You need to fill in an online form or call to join a group.

Women’s groups

Newcastle Ladies that Lunch is a social group for women in the North East who want to make new friends and have fun.  They organise regular meals out and coffee mornings, daytime events and some evenings. Most venues are in and around Tyneside and Wearside.

West End Women and Girls Centre open a Community Bakery Monday to Friday

Sustainable living

There are lots of reasons to choose food and drink more carefully now that we know the impact on our environment can be critical.  Perhaps you want to know which plant based foods are most nutritious or which fish can be caught sustainably or which cafes and restaurants to go to?  Below there are a few links that may help you make choices that have lower impact on our marine life, forests and climate:

Check the accessibility of the centre before you visit

AccessAble can help you to plan your trips to places like cinemas, theatres, restaurants, railway stations, hotels, colleges, universities and more. They visit and review the accessibility of places in Newcastle. Use their directory of venues to find wheelchair friendly venues, read more about facilities and disabled access available. Such as:

  • photos of the facilities
  • entrance to the building
  • accessible toilets or changing places
  • how easy it is to move around the venue
  • lifts
  • transport and parking
  • dementia friendly
  • quiet or safe space
  • sign language

Other useful information

  • Get Into Newcastle for ideas on where to eat out in Newcastle, special offers and discounts.
  • AccessAble offer information and reviews about accessible venues in the North East to help you plan your visit.
  • What’s on North East for ideas and information about upcoming events and activities in the North East.
  • Day Centres article on InformationNOW
  • Chain Reaction is an alternative service to a traditional day centre, and offers short-term support if you are feeling isolated and lonely, or are experiencing mental health difficulties. The aim is to help you to re-connect with sources of support from within your local community.

Last updated: May 8, 2024