The history of the afternoon and high tea goes back to 1840. In modern times, you will see hotels serving a ‘high tea’. Traditionally, the upper classes would serve a ‘low’ or ‘afternoon’ tea around four o’clock, just before the fashionable promenade in Hyde Park. The middle and lower classes would have a more substantial ‘high’ tea later in the day, at five or six o’clock, in place of a late dinner. The names derive from the height of the tables on which the meals are served, high tea being served at the dinner table.

Afternoon tea was introduced in England by Anna, the seventh Duchess of Bedford, in the year 1840. The Duchess would become hungry around four o’clock in the afternoon. The evening meal in her household was served fashionably late at eight o’clock, thus leaving a long period of time between lunch and dinner. The Duchess asked that a tray of tea, bread and butter and cake be brought to her room during the late afternoon. This became a habit of hers and she began inviting friends to join her. The Duchess continued it when she returned to London, sending cards to her friends asking them to join her for “tea and a walking the fields.”

The Duchess Influences London

This pause for tea became a fashionable social event. During the 1880’s upper-class and society women would change into long gowns, gloves and hats for their afternoon tea which was usually served in the drawing room between four and five o’clock.

Traditional afternoon tea consists of a selection of dainty sandwiches (including of course thinly sliced cucumber sandwiches), scones served with clotted cream and preserves. Cakes and pastries are also served. Tea grown in India or Ceylon is poured from silver tea pots into delicate bone china cups.

The Difference Between Afternoon and High Tea

Changing the phrase ‘afternoon tea’ to ‘high tea’ happens to differentiate between the afternoon tea that is traditionally served on low, comfortable, parlor chairs or relaxing in the garden and the worker’s after-work high tea that is served at the table and seated on high back dining chairs.

The Happy Travelers Tours ‘High’ Tea Experience

We are not shy about using the word ‘high’ in our High Tea Experience. The reason? We serve 3 types of CBD-infused Teas along side a three course CBD-infused (and non-infused) Treat Tower with Sandwiches, Scones and Breads and Desserts!

Perfect for Groups of Four or More! From Ladies Day Out to Bachelorette Parties, from Groups to Birthday Celebrations, our High Tea is the most unusual experience you’ll ever have!

Book your Seats today for the High Tea Experience!