“People queue for hours outside Bettys – which has six tea rooms across Yorkshire (but no apostrophe) and it’s definitely worth the wait,” says Caroline. “Served on a traditional silver cake stand, by waitresses in period costume, Bettys takes you back to an era of sophistication. Its selection of teas is staggering and has something to cater for every taste.” From £25.95.
6-8 St Helen’s Square, York, YO1 8QP; bettys.co.uk
Essex Rose Tea House
The Tiptree jam firm operates four tea rooms including this one, housed in a 16th-century building. Drop by for the great value Afternoon Tea Special – a sandwich, scone with clotted cream and jam and tea or coffee, all for £8.50.
High St, Dedham, Colchester, Essex CO7 6DE trooms.com
Leaf on Bold Street
“One of the most purse-friendly champagne teas out there,” says Laura. “Leaf prides itself on being a space for Liverpool’s creative folk and offers a large selection of loose-leaf teas with unlimited refills as part of its pretty weekend afternoon tea. Plus, it offers a gluten-free alternative.” £13.95 with Iced Champagne Cassis.
65-67 Bold Street, Liverpool, L1 4EZ; thisisleaf.co.uk
The Lowry Hotel
“Situated by the River Irwell, the Lowry is modern, elegant and offers an unforgettable experience,” says Caroline. “Afternoon tea (£22.50) is beautifully presented with a selection of traditional classics with modern twists, such as apple and cinnamon scones.”
50 Dearmans Place, Chapel Wharf, Manchester, M3 5LH thelowryhotel.com
Richmond Tea Rooms
“For a rather curious afternoon, Richmond Tea Rooms offers fabulous, over the top surroundings for the perfect Mad Hatter’s tea party,” says Laura. “We recommend Queen’s Tea (£18) served in the wonderfully quirky indoor greenhouse.”
Richmond Street, Manchester, M1 3HZ; richmondtearooms.com
Hey Little Cupcake
“Hey Little Cupcake is every girl’s dream – decorated in candy pink and packed to the rafters with sweet treats,” says Caroline. “Its ‘Cupcake Afternoon Tea’ is great fun with a quirky selection of cupcake shaped finger sandwiches, scones, chocolate-dipped strawberries and of course an all important array of cupcakes. At just £12 per person, it’s also a great one to take the kids to.”
Little Quay Street, Spinning Fields, Manchester, M1 3HF; heylittlecupcake.co.uk
“The emphasis at Combe House is on elegance and hospitality, with crisp linen, fresh flowers and log fires,” says Keith. “The privately owned Elizabethan country house is set in beautiful gardens. Ingredients are sourced locally or from Combe’s own kitchen gardens. Highlights are homemade buttery shortbread.”
Gittisham, Honiton, Exeter, Devon, EX14 3AD; combehousedevon.com
If you’ve made the trip to the impressive Chatsworth House, ancestral home of the Devonshires, why not take tea in the Cavendish rooms after exploring the grounds and house – traditional tea (£16.50) includes sandwiches, brownies, scones and meringues.
Bakewell, Derbyshire, DE45 1PP; chatsworth.org