The Glad Café is a licensed cafe and venue in the Shawlands area of southside Glasgow.
The inspiration for the Glad Café was a visit to a café in London in 2009, a place called Cafe Oto, in Dalston. The founder of the Glad Café, Rachel Smillie, was immediately struck by the look of the place and the fact that it seemed to be attracting a lot of people of different ages and different cultural backgrounds. She felt that the south side of Glasgow totally lacked something like that. She kept thinking about it, after that, and her son-in-law actually challenged Rachel to do the same in Glasgow. It took three years from then.
The Glad Café is a Community Interest Company that has something to offer people of any age or background in this diverse local community. The Glad Foundation offers affordable music lesson to local young people and it is financially supported by the Glad Thrift Boutique, a cooperative second hand shop adjacent to the Café, the Glad Café and Creative Scotland.
The café offers a range of affordable meals, locally baked cakes and drinks in a friendly and warm environment. It is considered by many as a welcome pioneering addition to this up and coming part of Glasgow. The exhibition space in the cafe also hosts a changing feast of southside creativity.
The venue provides a welcome space in the southside for showcasing local musicians as well as internationally known acts. It also hosts events such as The Glad Academy which has featured speakers like Nicola Sturgeon, Liz Lochhead, Gerry Hassan and Elaine C. Smith discussing philosophical matters, a monthly film club, comedy nights, local choir and small local theatre productions.