The Great British Tea Festival – Our Experience

Hey there Teacups! I hope you’re all doing well if you follow me over on instagram you’ll know that on October 21st my fiance and I took a trip to Derby to attend The Great British Tea Festival 2018. It was an event I had looked forward to since I found out it existed earlier this year and the wait was totally worth it we had such an amazing time and I’m so excited to relive it with you all today for this post.

On the day of the festival my fiance and travel to derby by train from Sheffield and for the most part aside from a slight headache it was a pleasant journey. When the festival organisers told me the venue was near the train station I was expecting a little bit of a walk still, but to my surprise we walked out of the train station doors and the roundhouse was directly across the road! (when they said it was close they really weren’t lying) I couldn’t have been happier because it was freezing on the 21st and not having a long walk to a venue was perfect. (I’m very glad they have the same venue booked already for next year.)45852361_2160914247563592_8655736140969541632_n.jpgUpon arriving we handed in our tickets at the ticket desk and we were given our V.I.P tote bag which were jam packed with tea goodies and information about the event. Honestly considering he V.I.P tickets were only £13.95 to get a bag full of goodies as well as a free cup of tea and a piece of cake in the tearoom was a really good deal. If you’re planning on going next year I highly recommend treating yourself to a V.I.P ticket it’s well worth the price you will pay and will enhance your experience tenfold.45877059_271023873578025_1565128701622878208_n.jpgI love the print on V.I.P tote bag and it’s really good quality I can definitely see myself using this bag throughout the next few months especially while my fiancé and I are visiting Christmas markets and things like that because it’s so spacious. After receiving out Bags and having a good look at what had been  included inside there was a V.I.P ribbon lanyard, A mug, a selection of tea samples and even some tea infused soap. We then walked around the corner and got out first glimpses at the venue.45772506_708069909560474_6522020676356800512_n.jpgFirst things first The Roundhouse is an absolutely beautiful venue and the perfect industrial/rustic environment for a tea festival. One of the first things I noticed when walking into the venue (aside from the stalls and the tea room of course) was the fact that each table dotted around the room has its own tea plant. I know I was there for the stalls and to sit and enjoy some tea in the tearoom but I’m a sucker for small details and this was one of my favourites. I also loved the fact that when we walked in the MAKK string quartet were already playing and the music helped to provide such a relaxing environment.

As you will all know since getting back from Walt Disney World in october 2017 I’ve been on a a tea buying ban. I simply had to put myself on a ban so I could make my way through a my huge tea collection and make the most of the teas I already had and it has gone really well. But I had to break / my tea buying ban for the tea festival It just had to happen and I went in ready to buy as much tea as I could possible afford, so the first thing we did went going in was slowly start to make out way around the room and take a look at all the stores. A lot of the companies that were there I have previously worked with for my blog so it was really nice to be able to put some faces to the names that had put so much trust into me and my blog and enabled me to try some amazing teas, tisanes and blend. There was also quite a few companies there that I had never heard of before and I’m sure I’ll end up ordering from almost all of them over the next year. Especially the refresh soap company that sell tea infused soap because the earl grey soap sample included in the V.I.P bag is incredible.45819841_495424920935529_811814145396572160_n.jpgAround 2pm we sat down in the tea room located right in the centre of the Venue and used out Free Tea and Cake voucher that was also included in the V.I.P bag to treat ourselves Rest out feet after shopping and meeting / talking to  internet friend for so long we really needed to relax a little bit before we did anything else and where better to do that than a tea room accompanied by the sound of the magnificent MAKK string quartet. I went for the Afternoon Tea blend and my other half went for an Earl Grey just like me he loves Earl Grey blends and was so happy to see that one had been included on the tea menu. Cake wise I went for Matcha blondie and my other half went for a lotus biscoff brownie (made by V-Bakes) and we really enjoyed them. Especially the Matcha one as it was really well balanced and paired quite well with the tea I had chosen. Even though we had to wait a little bit for our tea once it arrived it was well worth the wait and looking back I really wish I had picked up some of the blend I tried to bring home. (Elements who ran the tea room this year also ended up giving us some delicious free orange juice while we waited for our tea which was incredibly refreshing and we really appreciated the gesture.)

Aside from the stall and the tearoom one of my favourite aspects of this event was the presentations I thought they were such a brilliant idea and while we only managed to sit through one full one during the day (with Jane Pettigrew) we are definitely looking forward to seeing what kind of presentations will be put on next year. Because I’ve loved tea for so long I know quite a lot about it so the presentation with Jane was more of a refresher for me but my other half is a newbie to the world of tea and he learnt so much from her presentation. If this years presentations were anything to go by I’m sure everyone attending next year is in for a treat.46001277_363815797695866_8800494904124899328_n.jpgSpeaking of my fiancé Here’s what my he had to say about the festival : ‘’It was a great day! The venue was so amazing and the set up of the stalls was really efficient. There was a great selection of stalls that provided everything you would need to truly enjoy tea! As a tea rookie, the talks on the day were really useful for me to learn more about the tea industry. The VIP tickets were great value for money and the gift bags were exceptional. Overall it was such a fun day!’’ – T

No for my haul …despite going into this festival wanted to buy as much tea as I could afford I only ended up buying one bag (I went for Very Crafteas Desi Masala Chai). That snot because I didn’t want to buy some of the other teas on offer throughout the day but more that I had such an amazing time that I didn’t spend much of it shopping and I wasn’t able to full take in everything each stall had to offer. I am however really happy with everything that I picked up on the day as well as the samples that were provided in the V.I.P bags. Other than tea I ended up buying my other half I some chocolate, a tea themed cross stitch kit from Very Craftea, A small Jar of Jam and a small jar of honey from Tregothnan Everything else you see in the picture below is what was included in the V.I.P bags.45835127_1914170198706144_5282069858589081600_n.jpgAll in all my fiancé and I had a great time at The Great British Tea Festival and were are so happy we found out about the event. It’s not far from us at all and was a really fun day out that surrounded by tea and so many amazing like minded people who love tea just as much as we do. We’re already looking forward to next year and can’t wait to see what The Great British Tea Festival Team have got planned. If you want to find out more about The Great British Tea festival and buy your tickets for next year you can do that here. As always if you have any questions at all either stick them in the comments or send them to me on Twitter/Instagram @teaisawishblog and I’ll answer them all as soon as I can.

Speak to you all again soon. Happy Steeping – Kimberley

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