Winner for sisters

Hard work pays off: Sisters Emily and May Rowley pick up their award for Best Daytime Cafe in the 2012 Eat Shefield Awards
Hard work pays off: Sisters Emily and May Rowley pick up their award for Best Daytime Cafe in the 2012 Eat Shefield Awards
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CITY cafes received more votes than any other Eat Sheffield category.

And were there ever such devoted sisters to the cafe scene than Emily and May Rowley? Their little Sharrow Vale Road venue Thelma’s took the Daytime Cafe title while celebrating its first birthday.

May and Emily, 24, had no previous experience, only a mutual love of baking, good food and customer service - plus a small inheritance from their grandma, Thelma.

They had no business plan and signed up for an expensive lease, fingers-crossed. “We threw caution to the wind and jumped in with both feet,” said May, 25, who had left an events management job while Emily was weeks out of university.

“The way we went about it was stupid, but it all worked out through passion, hard work and choosing a great location. We would say to any young person: Follow your heart. Although do make a business plan first!”

The Rowley sisters still don’t have one, but are pressing on regardless. In November Thelma’s launches a £25-a-head evening dining and a catering arm is planned.