Clement Attlee Britain city Westminster UPS Waves FIVE BLOCK ICE Clement Attlee Britain city Westminster

The caff is one of Britain’s cultural treasures – but if we don’t eat in them, they’ll disappear

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E very day except Sunday, a large and unlikely queue forms outside a mansion block in Westminster, a stone’s throw from Channel 4, the Department for Transport and a public loo known mysteriously as the “iron lung”.

The queue’s a mixed crowd: along with all the tourists, there are plenty of office types, civil servants and people in hi-vis jackets.

Above their heads a sign reads Regency Cafe, its bold white lettering set against coal-black tiles. The place they’re lining up for opened 77 years ago, back when Clement Attlee was prime minister and rationing was still in place.Step inside and you’ll find a dramatic dining room.

Gingham curtains line the windows, oxblood linoleum covers the floors, the rest is all laminate tables and beautifully brown fixed seating.

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