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Xmas tea at Denmans Garden

Drop in for a festive afternoon tea and see the changes afoot at Denmans Garden.

If scoffing a full turkey dinner before the big day isn’t your thing then how about a Chrimbo version of an afternoon tea?

Conservatory tea room – pre Xmas decs and post scone scoffing!

If you haven’t seen Denmans Garden, next door to Fontwell Racecourse near Chichester, for a while – or at all – then now’s a great time to pop in for tea and scones and more. It came under new ownership this year and the friendly team have been working super hard to re-roof the conservatory-style cafe/restaurant and get everything ship-shape, with even, I hear, relatives popping in to lend a hand.

I had their festive afternoon tea just before the Christmas decorations went up. It included some of the best smoked salmon sandwiches I’ve ever had, in crumbly bread fingers, plus big fat scones and cream, a mince pie and plenty of tea from china cups for a very reasonable £10.50 per person. Or you can have a simple cream tea for £6.

There’s are also a range of home cooked cakes and muffins.

The conservatory is heated and there are rugs left on chair backs should you need to get extra toasty.

You may even be paid a visit by the resident pug, who originally belonged to Denman’s late creator – influential garden designer John Brookes MBE.

Denmans is a handy place for gifts too, not just for gardeners, with all sorts of knick-knacks, homewares and kids’ stuff on sale in the shop.

Afternoon tea is available when the garden is open – Tues to Sun 10am-4pm. There’s also a full Christmas menu (£25 for three courses) with turkey or a veggie option being served up on Sun 16 Dec, and party bookings are available.

Denmans Garden, Denmans Lane, Fontwell, Arundel BN18 0SU, 01243 278950, denmans.org

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