Tea Time in Harrogate
Yorkshire is known for a great many things, anyone who has visited York itself will likely know it was first founded by the Vikings, if you take a look at England’s history you’ll notice the importance of the area, particularly during the War of the Roses, Yorkshire also played a huge part in the country’s well chocolate industry with companies like Terry’s, Tunnocks and Fry’s all coming from here. Arguably above all else however Yorkshire is best known for one of the nations most beloved beverages, tea. Yorkshire Tea is one of the leading brands in the country, much beloved by the British people but did you know it’s actually owned by a company called Bettys and Taylors Group Ltd, a Yorkshire family business that started here in Harrogate and Bettys Tea room is a hot spot for tourism to this day.
The company owns three brands, Bettys, Taylors and of course Yorkshire Tea. The first Bettys tea room was established in Harrogate on Cambridge Crescent in 1919 by a Swiss confectioner named Frederick Belmont whose arrival to the area was actually something of an accident. When he first arrived in the country, he made his way to Kings Cross Railway Station, he also spoke very little English. He couldn’t recall at all where he was supposed to be heading and ended up boarding a train to Bradford. As well as in Harrogate he opened branches of Bettys tea room in Bradford, Leeds and later the largest of the four in York. The Harrogate location was also later moved to its current location on Parliament Street, still in Harrogate of course.
Unlike Bettys, Taylors of Harrogate was not initially a tea room but rather a merchant company for both tea and coffee. It was founded by Charles Edward Taylor and his brother and it was they who first blended Yorkshire tea as well as Taylors of Harrogate Coffee in 1883. Eventually they began to open up what were referred to as “Tea Kiosks” in both Ilkley and Harrogate. Both continued to operate separately until eventually in 1962 Bettys took over the Taylors company, renaming it Betty and Taylors Group. Amazingly the company is still to this day owned by the family of Fredrick Belmont.
When visiting Bettys Tea Room, you can expect a delightful experience and certainly one of the best afternoon teas you can experience in the area (maybe even the country). Though you don’t need to book a reservation to enjoy any of the Bettys Tea Rooms, Harrogate can get quite busy due to its history, fear not though you can easily book a table online with no hassle whatsoever. There is a huge selection of different teas on offer here, from Assam to Darjeeling and beyond. If you’re looking for something special however, why not try the exclusive Bettys tea blend? Also, while you’re here why not take advantage of the delicious food on offer? From sandwiches and pies to scones and meringues you’re sure to find something to enjoy here in Harrogate’s own palace of tea.