TAIL-wagging dogs posed for the pup-arazzi in celebration of an entrepreneurial couple’s pet-friendly café.

The Coffee Crate, in Kelvedon Road, Tiptree, opened last year and has since garnered a reputation for being the go-to place to enjoy a hot drink with your cute pooch.

The brainchild of partners Rachel Edwards, 31, and Sam Jarman, 28, the café boasts a plush, designated outside area for animals.

And on Saturday, both owners and their four-legged friends were welcomed in-store for a special afternoon filled with healthy doggie treats, warm puppuccinos and tasty pup-cakes courtesy of specialists Hugo’s Pawtisserie.

The social event for dogs was initially trialled last year and, after receiving a positive response, Rachel decided to do it again.

“It proved really popular before but we had a lot of people asking for us to do it on a weekend,” said Rachel.

“It was a really good day and there was a steady flow of different dogs coming in throughout the day, from really big dogs to small pugs.

“The weather wasn’t amazing, so we are already planning on doing it again in the summer.”


  • Tasty - Hector the pug enjoys a special dog friendly pup-cake

Rachel, a self-confessed besotted dog-lover, owns two miniature Dachshunds, while her partner has a burly bulldog.

The pair’s family and friends also have several pooches, which inspired the duo to make their café a welcoming environment for both humans and canines.

She said: “There are so many people now who go everywhere with their dogs, so people seek out dog-friendly places.

“It is becoming more common and when we started we had so many people ask if dogs were welcome.

“So, we thought why not?”

Rachel and Sam’s Coffee Crate is just one of eight businesses now operating from within a strip of industrial containers owned by the couple.

Initially, Rachel purchased one of the units for storage purposes, but decided to convert it into a café.

The ambition grew and the pair soon decided to take on all the containers and rent them out to businesses.

Sam’s skills as a electrician helped speed up the process and after two years, the quirky units are now full kitted out.

As a result, the metal boxes now house everything from a nail bar and oil shop to an estate agents and massage therapist.


Rachel believes the new additions to the village will only help boost the local economy.

“We got really good feedback, so we decided to convert them all,” she said.

“We had a really good team around us to help make it happen.

“It is now like a little community down there and everyone looks out for each other.

“All the shops work hand in hand and all the units are full now.

“There isn’t many shops in the High Street, and the ones which are there, have quite high rents.

“So, this is a really good stepping stone for the village.”

The Coffee Crate opens at 7.30am Monday to Friday, and 9am on Saturdays.

To find out more visit facebook.com/thecoffeecratetiptree.