Henfield, West Sussex 2001


Traditional linen tea towel with brown sketches.  While it is a tea towel of Henfield Village with drawings of Cricket on the Green, Woods Mill, St Peters Church and the Cat House (which was a tannery), the central picture is of Norton House Olde English Tea House. This tea towel was exclusive to them.

I was sitting in this very traditional tea room with embrodiered table cloths, bone china and amazing cakes displayed on an old dresser when I saw this tea towel on display. I couldn’t resist. I know that a lot of my tea towels are associated with particular places I have visited, but then I go to some very nice tea rooms so there are a lot of them.

Henfield is a village, 33 miles south of London and 12 miles north west of Brighton.  It is an unremarkable village, although cute.  It has two claims to fame: firstly, the 1st Henfield Scout Group is the oldest Scout Group in the country.  Secondly, Elizabeth Robbins was a local suffragette who owned a 15th Century farmhouse which she used as a retreat for suffragettes recovering from being on hunger strike.

Norton House had been a tea room for over 30 years in 2001, owned and run by Jean and John Sinclair.  This is a great sense of achievement in a world where  eateries open and close at the drop of a hat.  The Sinclairs had restored Norton House and opened it as a tea room and gift shop. In 2013 they closed the business to reclaim it as their home in retirement.  It is sad it is no longer a great tea room but I am pleased to have the tea towel to remind me of the nice day out I had.

Click below to return to the Virtual Tea Towel Museum



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