Mad Henry's Sparkling Vintage High Tea

As some of you may know I have collaborated with Donna Henry of Mad Henry’s Tea Room at Riverside Cottage (1 mile outside Bideford) to provide a Beauty Pamper & Vintage High Tea – am sure you can guess which bit I provide!

A bit of background

I joined a Ladies Networking Group in January last year as I wanted to mix with like-minded business women, meet some people, get some support and generally have someone to talk to. Yes, being a sole trader can be a lonely business sometimes.

The meeting proved to be invaluable to me in the first half of last year. I met some lovely ladies doing some wonderful things in and around North Devon. A really diverse bunch of women who, like me, had taken the plunge to leave their 9-5 jobs behind and follow their hobby/dream/passion/interest/great idea etc.

Whilst at a meeting, I heard about a workshop being run to Boost your Business which I attended in April last year. Sarah Escott, a Business Development Specialist at The Best of Barnstaple (click here for website) ran the workshop for free (we donated £12 each to charity). Sarah provided some invaluable advice and I was and am extremely grateful to her for putting on the workshop.

A lovely lady called Sarah-Jane Payne attended the workshop and gave me some names of people to contact, whom she felt might assist me and my business. Sarah-Jane owns and runs West Country Caterers  which specialises in providing a high level of home cooked cuisine and is one of the leading catering companies operating all over Devon.

It’s ok – relax – the next person I met was not called Sarah! There are rather a lot of us about……

After an appointment at Hallsannery I swung by Riverside Cottage and literally arrived and announced myself (I had gone on the off chance recommended by Hallsannery; yes, everyone knows everyone, thank goodness for me!).

Apologising for not having called first, or made an appointment, I was immediately met with “come in – come in”…… the lovely Donna Henry and I had met for the first time and clicked immediately.
The rest, as they say, is history……

After a few initial meetings Donna and I very quickly came up with the pamper tea idea and launched it at the end of the summer last year. It has been extremely well received and I know we are both very proud of what we offer. It has, and continues to be, both a pleasure and a privilege to work with both Donna and her husband Simon whose friendliness, charm and professionalism are bountiful.

We’ve had some great bookings: friends celebrating a 25th wedding anniversary, 2 young ladies celebrating a 17th birthday, friends just catching up, anniversary and birthday gifts to each other, to name but a few. We are just about to host our first “hen” pamper tea which we are very much looking forward to.

Mad Henry’s Tea Room is a very special location being right on the river with stunning views of the river Torridge. I love that you can see the iron bridge on the Tarka Trail which I think looks wonderful whether the tide is in or out. The tea room is decorated to a very high standard with comfortable chairs, fresh flowers, and home-made cakes, scones and jams all made by Donna herself. The almond and apricot scones are an absolute must.

In the warmer months there is seating outside and a summerhouse which seats 6, is close to the river and very private. A lovely little hide away for a cosy afternoon of pampering and a scrumptious tea.


If you are interested in booking a Beauty Pamper & Vintage High Tea, whatever the occasion, please click here for more information.

Just a word of warning, however, the earlier you book, the more chance you have of getting the day and time you want. Also, to note, in the summer months we can only take bookings for up to 6.

As I sit at my desk today writing this Blog I am only in the 2nd year of my business but I feel extremely blessed. So much has happened that I am grateful for and I am lucky to have met (and also work with) some really fantastic people. Long may it continue.


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Many thanks for reading.

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