Cafe table used by JK Rowling to write Harry Potter books salvaged after fire

Antique damaged by blaze that ripped through flats and businesses

A table that JK Rowling sat at to write parts of her Harry Potter books has been found in rubble after a fire at an Edinburgh café.

The owner of The Elephant House said he was “immensely relieved” to find the antique wooden table after the blaze, which caused severe damage to flats and businesses.

The famed author regularly frequented the cafe before she became a household name and would sit in the same spot to write parts of her series of fantasy novels.

After the fire last month, cafe owner David Taylor confirmed he had discovered the table after he was eventually allowed back into the damaged venue.

He said it suffered water and smoke damage but would be restored.

A video shot by Mr Taylor showed the gutted ruins of the cafe on the George IV Bridge in the city’s old town.

The windows appear to have been blown out and the ceiling is blackened by smoke.

The walls of the business, which in recent years became a major attraction for Harry Potter fans, also suffered extensive damage and charred furniture could be seen in the rubble.

Mr Taylor estimates it will take about a year for the cafe to be back up and running, the BBC reports.

The Elephant House was one of two cafes frequented by Rowling when she was writing the Harry Potter books in the mid-90s.

In July, she spoke to Simon Armitage’s podcast about having to stop writing in cafes after becoming famous.

“That was a lovely space with a really great view of the castle,” she said of The Elephant House.

“I met the owner years later and he said: ‘You never come in any more’.

“In a dream world I would still go in there, but it is just not humanly possible to go in there any more and write.

“I had to stop writing in cafes. I really loved it but I just couldn’t any more.”

The author is the recipient of numerous awards and has sold more than 500 million copies of the Harry Potter books.

Updated: September 30th 2021, 11:33 AM
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