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Board in the City CIC

Since the first business plan in 2015 - which was written before the cafe had opened, the cafe has inadvertently become a haven. Predominantly helping people and giving hope to those with barriers. Being not for profit, we are not driven by sales and targets. Even with group bookings such as the inner city youth group for street kids - that visit us - we do not charge entry and give jugs of squash on the house whilst our volunteers play games with them - making them feel special and most importantly - accepted. Mental well being is our main area that we address without making it an obvious goal.

The feel of the cafe is fun with the gaming, but, the board games are the key that opens the door for our service users in a covert manner. Social connections, friendships and relationships with others help shape who we are and how we behave. They are also one of the most significant influences on health and wellbeing. The cafe is like a social club for our users. 90 % of our team have a barrier and we are run prodominently by volunteers. It is a common statement from our customers that they tell us the café has ‘saved their life’. We also try to address isolation through our weekly coffee club or just by connecting people together to play games – the gaming is like a ‘hidden therapy’.

We collect data and anecdotes from surveys completed by our customers and team to help us keep our focus. We are the biggest board game cafe on the South Coast. There is even parking all around us!

We are wheelchair accessible and also have baby changing facilities. We are available for out of hours bookings for meetings / parties etc call for more details

Who to contact

Contact Name
Hayley Binstead
Contact Position
Managing Director
07905 000 383
023 8178 3240
Social Media
Company number

Where to go

Board In The City C I C, 38-40
Onslow Road
SO14 0JG
Children's Centre Areas

The cafe is split into 4 areas - one of which is our private hire room with a projector and speakers.

The private room can seat 12 - 18 people at tables comfortably, but without tables, up to 20 - the cost of this room for community use is £15 per hour. Refreshments are also available at an extra cost - cost on asking.

There is a virtual tour of the cafe on the web site.

Cafe can be booked out of hours - this is neogotiable on request.

Currently has about 86 covers /seats but using all 4 areas can fit in over 100 depending on use. 

Time / Date Details

When is it on
Week days 2pm - 11pm (closed Tuesdays) Saturday 11am - 11pm , Sunday 12pm - 8pm. Can be booked at other times
Time of day

Other Details


£3 door charge for unlimited time of game play for adults / £2 ages 5-16years old / under 5 's are free. Discretionary rates for those on Universal credit or medical exception for £1. Service users such as social workers coming in with clients, 2 for 1 on entry fees. 10% for Carer's card holders / loyalty scheme to aim for a free entry / Student discounts on Sundays including Double Dice discount


Referral Details

We are currently closed due to Covid - 19.

Please check out our facebook or website for up to date informtion.

If you need any support on your behalf to get shopping or collect medication or for a food parcel etc

Please call Southampton Covid Mutual Aid Support on 07923 353 365

Any Other Notes

We are more than just a cafe and this year are working with or aiming to work with the following through our outreach work or work experience placements to cafe use to training

  • Tauntons
  • FNTC
  • Oasis – Lordshill
  • NCS
  • Princes trust
  • Minecraft & Meltdowns
  • Southampton City College
  • 25th Sea Scouts
  • Cadets
  • Brownies / Guides
  • Enham Trust
  • Southampton Home Education
  • Southampton University
  • Solent University
  • Centralelille France - Internship
  • Create & Prosper
  • Solent Mind – peer support colleagues
  • Early Intervention for Psychosis
  • SCA
  • Southampton Employment Services
  • SVS
  • Chrysalis
  • Health & Wellbeing Community
  • Action Hampshire
  • Communicare
  • Southampton Employment SVS
  • Carers in Southampton
  • Community Play Link
  • Creative Options
  • C.R.A.T.C.H
  • Southampton On Board
  • Destiny
  • South Coast Gamers
  • Magic the Gathering
  • Emsworth Gaming Convention
  • Role Players Guild Southampton
  • Minivations
  • Playtesters
  • Heroclix
  • Cheapass Games
  • Lvl Up
  • Eversley (on line)
  • Virtual College (on line)
  • DA Training & Consultancy
  • Southampton City College

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Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information provided in this directory, we do not accept any responsibility or liability for any errors that have occurred. It is recommended that you always check with providers that their service or organisation meets your requirements. We offer an impartial service and we cannot recommend or endorse any providers listed.

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