Gail's have a few branches in SE1..the first was in the Neo Bankside block I believe....I dont find them very customer friendly or focused
I visited their York Rd opposite Waterloo station branch last week.
Coco di Mama and Black sheep coffee have more can do attitude...depending on the branch.
I have nothing against them, but it is sad to see the way The Cut is declining as a place to buy things you need as the stores get replaced with stores that only sell things you might want. Worse is the way Lower Marsh has declined. No doubt it will be changed soon enough. Whether it will be for the better will be debatable.
I believe that it is because Waterloo Quarter, or whatever name they go under, decided that both streets should become 'Destination zones'. Such nonsense means that the needs and desires of residents are ignored in favour of visitors who will, eventually, defect to other more fashionable areas. Then what will we be left with, run down coffee bars, and cafes, street food that is old fashioned.
I give it four or five years and there will be nothing left for the locals except, perhaps, 'Boots' and how long they will remain I don't know.