What better excuse for an afternoon of indulgence, in order to appreciate a tradition which accommodates any occasion – Afternoon Tea Week pays homage to the marvellous British event. Niamh Kealey reports…

This week, 12th-16th August, celebrates a most English tradition – the glorious afternoon tea. Tiers of finger sandwiches, scones, clotted cream and jam and delightfully bite-sized cakes define the event which has been carried through from the mid-19th century, when it was first introduced by Anna, the seventh Duchess of Bedford as a solution for late afternoon hunger. Afternoon tea week gives worthy recognition of such a civilised British custom, and locations across the country are offer every twist imaginable on the classic version. 

The Meadow at Coworth Park

In keeping with tradition, The Meadow Afternoon Tea at Coworth Park offers a range of sandwiches including poached salmon, smoked chicken and the iconic cucumber fillings, followed by baked scones, pastries and cakes. If this isn’t tantalising enough, the final flourish is the accompaniment of a glass of Veuve Clicqout, heritage British tea and the limited edition Coworth Park Meadow Tea, incorporating flavours of the hotel’s meadow. 

Mr Fogg's Tipsy Tea
Mr Fogg’s Tipsy Tea

There remains an abundance of options for the more eccentric this week – perhaps Tipsy Tea at Mr Fogg’s Residence, Mayfair – whichfeatures spirited teasset in gentleman’s club style surroundings, littered with explorer items and featuring spirited teas. 

Alice in Wonderland, Kona London
Alice in Wonderland, Kona London


Alternatively, Kona London brings a fanciful Alice in Wonderland afternoon tea experience with elegance and excitement, including ‘drink me’ potions and tarts inspired by the Queen of Hearts. This twist on Afternoon tea is perfect for children and adults alike, who want to immerse in the world that exists down the rabbit hole… 

Whittard of Chelsea, Covent Garden
Whittard of Chelsea, Covent Garden

For the tea-enthusiast, there is no better location for afternoon tea in this celebratory week that Whittard of Chelsea, at Covent Garden, where the range of teas is near infinite. A specialist brew bar and over 100 loose leaf teas will leave you utterly spoilt for choice of the perfect accompaniment to yet another choice of afternoon teas; the Whittard Tea – a traditional tea, the Grocer’s Tea for a more savoury feast, as well as Chelsea and Piccadilly teas – not one for the indecisive! 

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