Time for tea


We take an afternoon tea tour of the region (somebody has to!), and discover a selection of beautiful places to keep you happily spoilt this summer…


appetite guide to afternoon tea…

Etiquette is very important when it comes to afternoon tea. Here’s our guide…


The tea

Loose leaf tea is best, and should be served with a second pot of hot water to dilute as necessary.



Pouring the tea

If your waiter does not pour the tea, the person closest to the pot should pour for everyone. Milk, sugar or lemon should be added after the tea – not before.



Stirring the tea

Stirring may cause splashing, instead move the spoon back and forward from 12 o’clock to six o’clock. When done, place the teaspoon at the back of the teacup on the saucer.



Holding your teacup

Pinch the handle with your forefinger and thumb – don’t hook your finger through the handle, and don’t stick your pinkie in the air either.




Use your fingers for bread products (they’re called finger sandwiches for a reason). For your scone, break it with your fingers rather than using a knife, and add butter, cream or jam to each section – whether you add the cream or jam first is up to you (which is correct is a big debate, which we’ll not go into). Finally, don’t dunk your biscuits or pastries in your tea!


9 Altars Cafe

When we’ve been exploring in Durham, and shopping in all the little boutiques, we often pop into 9 Altars for a spot of afternoon tea (all that shopping is hard work, you know!). On the banks of the river and in the shadow of the Cathedral, there are few prettier places for tea, sweet treats and a good catch up. 

9 Altars Cafe, Silver Street, Durham City, DH1 3RB, tel 0191 374 1120 www.9altarscafe.com


Brocksbushes-1Blenkinsopp Castle Inn and Tea Room

A visit to the tea room at Blenkinsopp Castle is a treat for lovers of homemade cakes, homemade clotted cream teas and light snacks. The afternoon tea is justly renowned, and the setting is fittingly elegant.

Blenkinsopp Castle Inn and Tea Room, Castle Home Park, Brampton CA8 7JS, tel 016977 47757, www.blenkinsoppcastleinn.co.uk


Brocksbushes Farm Shop

At Brocksbushes Farm near Corbridge, the popular Tea Room makes a lovely setting for afternoon tea of sandwiches, scones and cakes served the traditional way – a treat any day of the week. Whether in the conservatory or outside, there are few better places to spend the afternoon.

Brocksbushes Farm Shop, Styford Roundabout, Stocksfield, NE43 7UB tel 01434 633 100, www.brocksbushes.co.uk


CarriageOutsideSummerCarriages Tea Room

The Carriages offers a warm welcome and a unique dining experience aboard the beautifully restored 1957 Mark 1 Carriages at Bellingham Station. Passengers can enjoy sumptuous afternoon tea in this stunning setting complete with cakes and tray bakes, a round of four different sandwiches, cream scones and tea.

Carriages Tea Room, Woodburn Road, Bellingham, NE48 2DG tel 01434 221 151, www.carriages-tearoom.co.uk


danielFarmDaniel Farm

In the heart of the Tyne Valley, Daniel Farm offers a taste of the good life with its tea room situated at the heart of the farm, which you can explore and meet some of the rare breeds which call it home. In the tea room, the cosy country setting is complemented with produce from the farm used in the homemade cakes, scones and sandwiches and accompanied by your choice of tea.

Daniel Farm, Sled Lane, Wylam, NE41 8JH, tel 01661 853 849 www.facebook.com/danielfarmwylam


The Jiggery Pokery Shop

Afternoon tea at The Jiggery Pokery Shop is a taste of the North East with local produce used throughout the menu of sandwiches, fruit scones, cakes, and teas. There’s also the fab shop to have a mooch in on you way in, and out. The Jiggery Pokery Shop, Dene Workshops, Mickley, Stocksfield NE43 7BG, 01661 842 256, www.jiggery.co.uk


The Last days of the RAJ

Afternoon tea takes an Indian twist at The Last Days of the Raj with Bengali Scotch eggs, gol gappa, pakora & vegetable and lamb samosas, and chilli mango prawns joining a selection of cakes, scones and of course teas on the menu. Afternoon tea (Indian, Maharajah’s, Vegetarian, and Cream available) is served noon-5pm Saturdays and Sundays, booking essential. The Last Days of the Raj, Main Street, Dinnington, Newcastle, NE13 7JS tel 01661 598 181, www.lastdaysoftheraj.co.uk


The Little Coffee House

Afternoon tea is a beautifully traditional affair at The Little Coffee House with finger sandwiches and delicious cakes, scones with clotted cream and jam, and a choice of tea or coffee. Served noon-5pm daily, treat yourself to a visit soon! The Little Coffee House, within Country Baskets, Princesway North Team Valley, NE11 ONF, tel 0191 447 3304 www.facebook.com/thelittlecoffeehouse



Treat yourself to afternoon tea at Maddison’s and sample some of owner Paul Purvis’ amazing scones (he has some 500 varieties and makes at least three fresh batches every day, including some of the best gluten free baking we’ve ever seen). A comfort blanket of stripped down timber booths and comfy nooks, Maddison’s is the perfect place to relax and let the world go by.

Maddison’s, Front Street, Consett, DH8 5AQ, tel 01207 583 318 www.maddisonsconsett.co.uk


maisy'sMassey’s Tea Room

In the picture-perfect town of Corbridge, Massey’s is a great place to stop for afternoon tea, which comes in three sizes – micro, mini or maxi – and includes sandwiches, large scone with jam and cream, cake and coffee/tea. We know which one we’ll have…

Massey’s Tea Room Middle Street, Corbridge, NE45 5AT tel 01434 633 130, www.masseystearoom.co.uk


The Meadows Coffee Shop

There are few prettier places on our tour than the Meadows Coffee Shop in the Rainton Meadows nature reserve with its woodland, lakes and wetlands teeming with wildlife. The Meadows Coffee Shop is home to homemade food with afternoon tea complete with sandwiches, cakes and scones served daily.

The Meadows Coffee Shop, Rainton Meadows, Houghton- le-Spring DH4 6PU, tel 0191 584 3112 www.durhamwt.com/visitors-centres/rainton-meadows


Number 4

The gorgeous Number 4 café in the heart of Langley Park is well worth a visit with its sumptuous afternoon tea complemented by a fab local menu, plus the chance to explore the gift shop and pick up some handmade gifts, cards and more.

Number 4, Old Co-op Buildings, Langley Park, Durham, DH7 9XE tel 0191 373 1404, www.facebook.com/number4coffeegiftsandmore


oakcafeOak Café

Trips to Newcastle for midweek meetings make us hungry, as do Saturday shopping trips. Few things cheer us up more than a trip to Oak Café at Barker & Stonehouse for an indulgent afternoon tea. The gorgeous décor combined with the homemade food make this a must visit next time you’re in the city.

Oak Café at Barker & Stonehouse, Strawberry Buildings, Newcastle NE1 4PQ, tel 0191 232 3200, facebook.com/cafeoaknewcastle


The Running Fox

Afternoon tea doesn’t come much fresher than at The Running Fox, home to award-winning expert bakers. With sandwiches, quiche, pie, scones and cakes all on the menu, the only the thing you have to worry about is fitting it all in!

The Running Fox, Riverside, Felton, Morpeth, NE65 9EA tel 01670 787 090, www.runningfoxbakery.co.uk


Sweethart Coffee & Cakes

The afternoon tea at Sweethart Coffee & Cakes in Consett has won owner and expert baker Mark Hart legions of fans. Crafted by Mark, the homemade cakes and scones are some of the best we’ve found, and piling in the appetite Volvo for a trip to Sweethart is a regular occurrence.

Sweethart Coffee & Cakes, Derwent St, Consett, Co. Durham, DH8 8LU tel 01207 501 100, www.sweethartcoffeeandcake.co.uk


Sutra Tea

The Sutra Tea Co. Tea Shop & Lounge is Jesmond is a shrine to all things tea. Filled with blends and infusions from a round the world, you could visit every day and sample something new and exciting. The huge range of tea is complemented with either the raw dessert afternoon tea (gluten-free/refined sugar/dairy-free) or Japanese-inspired fruit sushi.

Sutra Tea Co. Tea Shop and Lounge, Clayton Road, Jesmond, Newcastle NE2 4RP, www.teasutra.co.uk


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