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This is it! I've given up work -retired from the rat race and am about to start on a 10 year adventure, doing all those things I've been meaning to do but never had the time to do them. I've offloaded my responsibilities and it is now my time. So follow my adventures and see whether I actually manage anything!

Wednesday, 25 November 2015

Twinings Tea Museum (London Museum #23)

There has been a Twinings tea shop  on The Strand since 1706 when Thomas Twining bought Tom's coffee shop. At that time  London was full of coffee shops as they were the meeting places for business transactions. There was a lot of competition between the coffee houses but Tom's was different as it also sold tea.
Tea was an expensive commodity as it was highly taxed but it became very fashionable during the 18th Cent among the upper classes.

The shop is very narrow with shelves on either side displaying all the different teas. Above the shelves are portraits of the Twinings family who have been involved in the business since 1706.
Towards the back of the shop is a loose tea bar with a sampling counter where you can try one or two of the numerous varieties available. The assistant was very knowledgeable, not just about the tea, but also about the history of the building. The building had to be rebuilt after the war but they kept the same design.

At the back is a small museum displaying tea pots and caddies as well as information about the Twining family. Although Twinings  is now owned by an American company there is still a descendant from Thomas Twining on the board of directors.
 The word caddy comes from the Malay 'kati' which was a measure of weight. As the tea was so expensive it was kept in a locked box.

 Lots of people think the bowl in the centre of the caddy was for sugar but apparently it was for the lady of the house to mix and blend her own tea.

This plaque can be found at the back of the building.


  1. so lovely - I like tea. I guess it smells very good inside :)
    Have a nice day

  2. Now this is Awesome I need to go there, I love tea

  3. an 'American company'...that sounds so wrong, doesn't it?

  4. I love Twinings tea but it's a little expensive for everyday use. :-)

  5. What an interesting place! I'm not a coffee drinker but I love tea. This is my kind of place! :)

  6. I always stop in to taste and buy gifts to take home. We can buy Twinings tea in the U.S. but only a couple varieties and there are so many more available in London.

  7. Unfortunately I had to stop drinking tea because of the caffeine in it and now can only drink the herbal versions. I miss my milky cuppa!

  8. I'm a big tea fan so that would be right up my street. But I must admit that my chosen brew is "Yorkshire Tea" which I'm sure would have the fine people at Twinings in a bit of a fit. Thanks for the visit!

  9. I am a tea drinker with the occasional coffee thrown in so found this rather interesting. An intriguing design for the shop, long and narrow but I guess they went with the space they had way back when.


  10. That's a real special place ! Making the right tea is a whole art !

    I always have to laugh when I read "coffee shop" and the English (or American) tourists who come to Amsterdam and look for a cup of coffee ! They are very surprised because in a "coffee shop" you smoke hash ! Legally and even with a "menu" card !

  11. A museum that is new to me. And I go through/past/along The Strand so often. I will definitely visit asap.

  12. I just bought some Twinings "Irish Blend" yesterday


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