The 50-year-old chain, which has become part of the Canadian national identity and is Canada’s biggest cafe brand, said it had partnered with a British franchisee and planned to open stores in Scotland, England and Wales.
Twitter user The Human Watermelon, who describes herself as a “Canadian lass in Edinburgh”, wrote: “So I wake up to find out @TimHortons might be coming to the UK” followed by pictures of a dancing girl.
On Facebook, Marcia Warcholak wrote: “Nomnomnom. Just point me in the right direction.”
The move is only “Timmie’s” second international expansion outside of North America for the brand, which also has stores on seven Canadian Army bases worldwide.
The cafe chain, which is famous for its mini doughnuts known as “Timbits” and its “double double” coffee, which comes with two creams and two sugars, was founded by Canadian professional ice hockey player Tim Horton. The brand has become a national treasure, with many Canadians claiming to crave Tim Hortons while travelling abroad.
Peter Korotkov, a former Mountie in the Canadian Mounted Police, wrote: “Okay, gonna have to go to Scotland to make sure it tastes the same as here.”
However, not all Canadians were as enthusiastic about the idea.
Vancouver-dweller Nicole Parent wrote on Facebook: “As a Canadian, I am embarassed by this. Sorry, Scotland. Stick with Nero and Costa...”
Scot Alasdair Gordon added: “Do we not have enough coffee shops already? How much more caffeine can we drink?”
Restaurant Brands International, which also owns Burger King and bought the firm two years ago, said the UK openings would be part of a worldwide expansion plan. It has not yet revealed how many UK Tim Hortons stores it plans to open, or where they will be.
Elías Díaz Sesé, President of Tim Hortons, said: “This is an incredibly proud moment for the Tim Hortons brand as we enter this dynamic market. We look forward to bringing some of our signature products to Great Britain and helping our partners build brand awareness and open restaurants to welcome new guests.”
The company previously made a brief foray into the UK market with Tim Hortons branded stands in convenience stores. Ex-pat Canadians, however, claimed they failed to provide “a little taste of home”.