Review: Darkroom Espresso Coffee Shop

// Where: Swindon, Farringdon Road //

Having moved from London back to Swindon, I had undoubtedly become accustomed to the broad spectrum of cafe culture that the city had to offer.

Cafe’s have always been little dens for me – perfect for catching up on reading; attempting some actual work; or escaping from the errands I was meant to be running. With this in mind, I have always tried to stay away from the big conglomerates, you know, the ones where you walk in and all that’s missing is a carousel (which you’d have to queue for anyway).

If you ever want to get out of Swindon for a little while, without going too far, take a walk down Farringdon Road.

There’s a clear continuity of craftsmanship throughout Darkroom Espresso, from the wall art on display, and the wooden service counter, to the freshly made sandwiches and coffee. It exerts a rustic and modest approach to hospitality.


I am pleased to be greeted by a diverse range of clientele which, like the decor, is not cluttered together. It’s an open space that caters for writers and readers; catch-ups and drop-ins;  and Darkroom’s cycling club.

Much like the atmosphere, the staff are cool and casual – there is no sign of forced marketing – as they amiably replenish the sandwiches on the counter, make delicious coffee, and orchestrate an in-house playlist.

To my delight there isn’t an overwhelming menu thrown at me upon arrival, nor am I in fear that at any given moment the staff could break down into a rendition of “Be Our Guest”. I just want a good cup of coffee.

If you find yourself looking for something refreshing and alternative in Swindon, I highly recommend you stop by.



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