what time is high tea in england

what time is high tea in england

What is Afternoon Tea?

Afternoon tea is an snackized meal served between lunch and dinner in Britain, typically between 3 and 5 pm. There are a variety of items included such as sandwiches, scones, cakes, and biscuits. It is a tradition that has been around since the late 1700s, originally made popular by Anna, the Duchess of Bedford.

What Time is High Tea in England?

In England, the average time for High Tea is between 4 and 5 pm. However, the timing can vary depending on where you are located and what type of event you are attending. It is important to take this into account when deciding on a specific time for High Tea.

Traditional Afternoon Tea

Traditional afternoon tea is generally served anytime between 2 pm and 4 pm. This type of tea is often served in a restaurant and involves a variety of finger sandwiches, pastries and cakes, and a warm beverage such as tea.

High Tea

High tea is usually served later in the day at around 4 pm. It is a more robust meal and involves hot dishes such as fish and chips, sausages, and traditional British pies. It is served with a variety of items such as mashed potatoes, vegetables, and gravy. It is traditionally accompanied by a variety of teas, and sometimes a beer or other alcoholic beverages.

Afternoon and High Tea Etiquette

When attending either afternoon or high tea, it is important to adhere to proper etiquette. This includes:

  • Dressing Appropriately: Avoid wearing overly casual clothing. Semi-formal attire is typically the norm for afternoon tea.
  • Making Conversation with Others: It is polite to engage in small talk with other guests, such as enquiring about the type of tea being served and asking questions about the food.
  • Using Proper Table Manners: When eating and drinking, it is important to use proper manners such as not speaking with food in your mouth and avoiding making loud eating noises.
  • Acknowledging the Host: At the end of the tea, be sure to thank your host for hosting you and invite them to your next gathering.


The timing for afternoon and high tea in England may vary depending on the event, but typically falls between 2 pm and 5 pm. Remembering proper etiquette and dressing appropriately will ensure that your Afternoon or High Tea experience is enjoyable for everyone involved!


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