Frequently Asked Questions


What are your opening times?

We open from Monday to Friday 10am – 4pm, Saturday and Sunday 10am – 5pm.

How long as Café Autisan been open for?

Café Autisan opened its doors in May 2015. The people of Whalley have been really supportive towards the Café and are genuinely interested in what we are trying to achieve which is proven from the amount of visitors we receive from the local community.

Is the environment at Café Autisan autism friendly?

We have worked in partnership with autistic people to ensure that the environment at Café Autisan is autism friendly. The café is fitted with low arousal mood lighting, calming water features and relaxing music to help people on the autistic spectrum to have a stress-free experience.

Café Autisan is in the grounds of Whalley Abbey. Do you have to pay to gain access to the café?

It’s free to visit Café Autisan and our shop and gallery. If you would like to visit the gardens of Whalley Abbey either before or after your visit there is a small fee for adults which you can pay the entrance of the gardens or inside Café Autisan.

Is there free parking in the grounds?

Yes, parking is free.

Does Café Autisan provide meals suitable for vegetarians and vegans?

We have several options for vegetarians on our menu. Unfortunately we can’t guarantee that our bread does not contain traces of milk or eggs so we do not provide specific meals for vegans.

What skills can people working at Café Autisan expect to learn?

We support you to learn a wide range of skills including food preparation, interacting with customers, general upkeep of the café, as well as replenishing stock and ordering from our suppliers. We promote social and peer interaction to ensure you have experience of working in a group to complete an activity or task.

Can autistic people gain qualifications whilst working at Café Autisan?

Yes, we can work with you to gain National Vocational Qualifications and ADSAN awards. We also use Individual Progress Programmes, which are an effective way to focus on specific skills and record improvements and outcomes.

What kind of support would an autistic person working at Café Autisan expect to receive?

You’d receive an initial assessment, and if we can support you we would put together a support design. This would identify your learning goals and the type of support you would benefit most from. As well as Café based skills, this might include support with communication and social interaction.


If you have any further questions, please do contact us.