Monday, 29 June 2009

The Orchard, Grantchester, Cambridge..........

The Orchard today. The Orchard 1910

The weather here is absolutely glorious. I don't know why everyone thinks that our weather is so awful. I don't think that there is anywhere better than a hot English summers day. Yesterday was one of those days and I went to The Orchard in Grantchester, Cambridge. The Orchard is a corner of England where time stands still and the outside world rushes by. Apparently, more famous people have taken tea there, than anywhere else in the world.
The Orchard, first planted in 1868, became a tea garden purely by chance. A group of Cambridge students asked Mrs. Stevenson of Orchard House if she would serve them tea beneath the blossoming fruit trees rather than, as was usual, on the front lawn of the House. They were unaware that, on that spring morning in 1897, they had started a great Cambridge tradition. In order to supplement their income, the Stevenson's took in lodgers at Orchard House, and, in 1909, a young graduate of Kings College took up residence. His name was Rupert Brooke, the poet.

Some of the famous people who have taken tea in The Orchard Tea Gardens are:

Emma Thompson, John Cleese, Hugh Laurie, Peter Cooke, Stephen Fry, Tim Rice, Clive James, David Frost, Virginia Woolf, Prince Charles, King George VI etc. etc.

The weather is even hotter today and long may it continue,



  1. Thanks for bringing back wonderful memories of taking tea at Granchester on a hot summer afternoon, Jackie. To make the experience truely complete, David and I liked to take a punt up the river from St. John's College where we were living during the first year of our marriage....David punting, of course and me just trailing my hand in the river and ducking under the weeping willows that hung over the banks.......bliss.

  2. Your blog is amazing. I love it and I am so glad that my little blog got you started. Thanks for the mention!
    Ness xx

  3. Wow Jacqueline.. this is lovely... and i adore the vintage photo. xx Julie