About The English Tea Table
Created by Caroline Hope, The English Tea Table is a leading learning resource based in London, England. It provides information and knowledge about Afternoon Tea customs through through practical workshops, lectures, curated events, and study courses.
Caroline is an historian, food researcher and art practitioner . Caroline’s work explores the resonance of past lives and domestic materialities, and how making these evident can offer opportunities to reconsider how certain histories are represented today. She recently completed her MA By Project at London Metropolitan University. This self-led research project was concerned with methods of transferring knowledge about notions of English Politeness, through the lens of the 18th Century Tea Table.
MA By Project, A response to the English tea table
Caroline founded her business over 15 years ago, teaching a global audience how to prepare a domestic afternoon tea party. She presents lectures and leads tours to study the material, tea-related objects and consumables of the past, and how they evolved, according to who was using them.
One of her earliest memories as a four year old was going to tea with Aunt Molly to be looked over to see if she might grow up to be a beauty (an old fashioned virtue!). On the recent death of her mother she found letters from the same aunt alluding to the fact she was almost ready to ‘come out’ for the Social Season, along with all the invitations received during the Season. This included the handwritten postcards inviting her to tea by her fellow debutantes!
Caroline is the first to acknowledge her upbringing harked back to a previous era and was very out of step with the current times. However it has been helpful to interpret the implicit values and etiquette of the original social group who shaped the domestic ritual of tea in the afternoon, an event that has been overshadowed by the opulent extravaganza of the public commercial transaction, Afternoon Tea.
The English Tea Table is the trading name for Caroline Hope Ltd. It is a UK government-registered learning provider.