This experience, has to be one of my most favourite activities that we have had as a family. We had originally booked it with the intention of it being a lovely treat for my youngest son Riley who absolutely loves Peter Rabbit, but we all ended up thoroughly enjoying it and the age ranges in our group were from 3 to 67!
The organisers have clearly put a lot of thought and effort into these events, which are bookable on their website here: Afternoon Tea with Peter Rabbit
Tickets cost £11.50 for an adult, and £8.50 for children and both offer excellent value for money. The staff and the service was absolutely fantastic and I literally cannot recommend it enough.
For the price you pay, you receive admission into the museum, an array of delicious food including pastries (the nicest sausage rolls ever), cakes, scones, sandwiches and plenty of tea, coffee and juice at the party. a storytelling experience with Beatrix Potter, the chance to meet and have a cuddle with Peter Rabbit, a balloon for all the children in the party, rabbit ear hats, and two lovely wrapped gifts for the children to open. Riley, Emma and Ben each received a tin of coloured pencils and a lovely A6 sized notebook.
The tea parties are held across the road from the World of Beatrix Potter Attraction. and if I was to have any negative comment regarding the experience it would just be that you have to wait outside until the party start time, and with there being many young children crowded together alongside a very busy main road, I was a bit worried about the safety aspect. There is a bit of room between the main door and the party room door, so personally I would utilise this space so that there is not too large a crowd outside as this also caused an inconvenience to pedestrians trying to get past.
On arrival, we were greeted by two lovely members of staff, one of whom asked for our family name and then told us which table we were seated at. All of the tables were named after characters from the stories and with there being limited tables it was very easy to find our seats. The tables were beautifully decorated and laid out, and my children were all very excited to see two wrapped presents by their seats. The food looked amazing, and once all the families had been seated we quickly tucked in.
There was certainly no shortage of food, as we all have very large appetites but there was plenty for us to enjoy and fill us up. Pots of tea and jugs of juice were readily available on the table, and a member of staff also walked around with coffee, so that was available too as an alternative.
Whilst enjoying the tea party, a lovely lady dressed as Beatrix Potter walks around the tables and interacts with the children and asks them lots of questions about themselves and also their favourite characters. She was also more than happy to answer my childrens questions too, and she played the role of Beatrix Potter fantastically well. Once it looked as if families had finished eating, she invited all the children over to one side of the room, where she proceeded to tell them the Tale of Peter Rabbit. There was a wide range of ages at the tea party, but everyone sat there quietly and listened to every word. It really was wonderful to watch.
Once the story had been told, the children were informed that Peter Rabbit himself would be coming to visit them, and sure enough soon after, a staff member in a beautiful Peter Rabbit costume came in and the children all crowded round him to give him plenty of cuddles. Unfortunately due to the amount of children there, they don't offer the opportunity for individual photos which is a shame, as it would be a lovely memento of the day and I would have even happily paid extra for this, but seeing the smile on Riley's face as Peter Rabbit entered the room absolutely made my day, and I did manage to get a couple of well timed pictures of Riley giving him a hug.
The whole experience last approximately 2 hours, and then a further 45 minutes going around the museum across the road in the main building. I was also told by a member of staff that in the summer holidays they also hold a show on the stage in the tea party room, and also offer Christmas Parties in December too, so if you are planning on visiting the area, it is definitely worth checking their website out to see if there are any tickets left for one of these events.
Overall, we had an amazing time, and will definitely be returning again in the future!
For further information please visit the World of Beatrix Potter Attraction website - Afternoon Tea with Peter Rabbit