Calling Time on Tea
After nearly ten years trading in the leafy borough of Richmond-upon-Thames The Tea Box is to close its doors for the last time on Sunday 7 August at 6.30pm.
Owners Jemma Swallow and Mike De Souza are calling it time on tea on the high street to focus the business on its online offering.
“We have loved being part of the Richmond Community who have made us feel so welcome over the years. We selected the borough to launch our tea venture for many reasons, not least because we felt the clientele we wished to attract would appreciate the cultural activities we provided alongside our tea service of high quality loose leaf teas,” commented Jemma.
Having survived the turbulent economic uncertainties post-2007, due to the support and encouragement from its customers who have displayed a passion equal to owner’s own for high quality teas, The Tea Box has been responsible for upping the standard of tea offerings both in the borough of Richmond and elsewhere. Whether it has been other fellow café owners who have replicated the element of tea theatre including the use of a tea timer for the customer to brew their own tea, to online tea companies replicating the introduction of a ‘Tea mail’. Even Dragon’s Den Deborah Mead appeared to like The Tea Box brand name when she selected a new start up on the show with the same brand name only to discover Jemma and Mike had already protected the name as a registered trademark many years previously. Indeed it‘s not always been an easy journey as The Tea Box’s collision with German conglomerate Teekane proved in 2009 over another trademark registration, resulting in a victory for the local shopkeepers in Richmond keeping their distinctive logo in a “David versus Goliath” case.
Over the years, as the company’s tea sommelier, Jemma has been asked to give talks on tea, sharing her expertise to other café owners and members of the public. She plans to continue this consultancy work while expanding the company’s existing wholesale offering for the hospitality trade. Meanwhile, for this week only, The Tea Box is offering 25% off all retail stock; so don’t waste any time yourself and get there quick if you want to bag a tea bargain!
1 August 2016