There can be nothing more perfect than a visit to one of England’s finest stately homes, castles or palaces, and no more perfect way to top off the day than with a wonderful afternoon tea while you’re there. With the help of Treasure Houses, we take a look at 10 of the best places to have your cake and eat it.
Beaulieu, New Forest, Hampshire – Beaulieu Afternoon Tea
Enjoy afternoon tea with a wide selection of cakes and pastries all baked in-house in the Brabazon Coffee Shop and Restaurant. Some produce comes from Lord Montagu’s own Victorian Kitchen garden: beetroot is transformed into a delicious moist cake and plums made into jam, to eat on scones with lashings of Dorset clotted cream.
Blenheim Palace, Woodstock, Oxfordshire – Marlborough Champagne Afternoon Tea
Blenheim Palace is the perfect place to enjoy a traditional afternoon tea in the elegant surroundings only a palace could provide. Tea is served in the Orangery Restaurant, overlooking the Dukes private Italian gardens, a truly inspired setting.
Burghley House, Lincolnshire – Orangery Tea
Have tea in ‘Capability’ Brown’s Orangery restaurant overlooking the topiary in the South Gardens. Homemade scones jam and clotted cream can be enjoyed in the peaceful and romantic Rose Garden.
Castle Howard, York – Castle Howard Chocolate Brownie
From traditional sponge cake and scones with jam and cream to golden flapjack and indulgent caramel shortbread, enjoy an afternoon treat at one of Castle Howard’s cafes.
Chatsworth, Derbyshire – Devonshire Afternoon Tea
Enjoy a British tradition at Chatsworth with an afternoon tea in the Cavendish restaurant in the 18th-century Stables, designed by the famous architect James Paine.
Harewood House, Leeds – Discover a special new selection at Harewood
Taste the delights of afternoon tea at Harewood. Relax on the south facing Terrace, with spectacular views over the award-winning formal parterre and “Capability” Brown landscape as Red Kites soar overhead.
Hatfield House, Hertfordshire – The Hatfield House Chocolate & Walnut Brownie
Delicious cakes, pastries, scones and much more are available from the Coach House bakery. On warmer days homemade treats can be enjoyed from the outside upper terrace of the Restaurant which looks out towards the front of the House.
Holkham Hall, Norfolk – Lovely locally sourced cake
As part of a visit to Holkham Hall, you will discoverthe brand new, spacious Courtyard Café with delicious, locally sourced produce.
Leeds Castle, Kent – Lady Baillie Afternoon Tea
Treat yourself, or a loved one, to a sumptuous afternoon tea, inspired by Lady Baillie’s chef de patisserie, Maurice Sauget. Enjoy a selection of teas and coffee, traditional finger sandwiches, freshly baked scones with all the trimmings and a selection of fine handmade cakes.
Woburn Abbey, Bedfordshire – Anna Maria Afternoon Tea
The quintessential English tradition of afternoon tea is said to have been started around 1840 by Duchess Anna Maria, wife of the 7th Duke of Bedford, who entertained her friends in the Blue Drawing Room at Woburn Abbey. Visitors today can experience afternoon tea at Woburn at the Duchess’ Tea Room or at the Estate’s hotel in the village.
Read our guide to on how to celebrate Afternoon Tea Week here.