Icons of England
  • Introduction
  • The Icons
  • Nominations
  • News
  • Learn & Play
  • Your Comments

Bettys Cafe Tea Rooms, Harrogate

584 of 1170 nominations


Bettys Cafe Tea Rooms, Harrogate

Is this an icon?


Bettys Cafe Tea Rooms, Harrogate

Don’t look for a Bettys Tea Rooms anywhere other than Yorkshire — the firm resolutely refuses to open cafés anywhere but their home county. You’ll find branches of the world-famous Bettys in Harlow Carr, York (which also has a Little Bettys), Harrogate, Ilkley and Northallerton, where you can partake of the 300 types of cakes, bread and chocolates made at Bettys Craft Bakery in Harrogate.

Bettys began when Swiss confectioner, Frederick Belmont, moved to England and ended up in Harrogate by mistake after getting on the wrong train in London. In 1919, he opened the first Bettys Café Tea Rooms, followed by the Craft Bakery a few years later. In the 1960s Bettys joined forces with another Yorkshire business, the ethical tea and coffee merchants, Taylors of Harrogate.

But one question remains: who was Betty? The company isn't saying, preferring to insist on its menus, "although many tales are told and explanations offered, some mysteries are better left unsolved".

Watch Edward Bramah make the perfect cup of tea here.


Your comments

It is so quintessentially English. People travel from far and wide just to have tea at Bettys.

Stuart McIntosh

Bettys is a delicious slice of the past, it is always a pleasure to pop in for tea and the beautiful fancy cakes are well renowned. Since moving to London, many colleagues and friends have badgered me to bring them something from Bettys whenever I return home to Yorkshire.
Kate Taylor

Lovely shop and lovely tea room! Tea was nice and the chocolate tart I had was lovely too. I bought some Halloween biscuits from the shop and they were all so yummy. Such a sheer delight and I'd difinitely go there again. :)

View All Comments (6)



I nominate the English weather.