Bettys Café Tea Rooms has been named the best place to enjoy afternoon tea in the UK.

The ‘Top Tea Place 2012’ accolade was awarded to the North Yorkshire business by The Tea Guild, after it received a near-perfect score from the Guild’s inspectors.

As well as the Top Tea Place award, the Guild also presented a number of other special awards of excellence to tea rooms across the UK, in recognition of their quality and consistently high standards in tea service.

The anonymous judges award points for the variety, flavour, knowledge and service of the teas offered, together with the quality and service of food, décor, ambience and presentation.

Bettys was praised for “its delightful surroundings, affable staff, and the ‘quietly efficient’ service that guests enjoyed”. 

The judges were also impressed by the variety and amount of sandwiches, scones and cakes on offer.

Irene Gorman, head of The Tea Guild, said: “Bettys Café Tea Rooms in Northallerton offers a truly special tea experience and this award is very well-deserved. The attention to detail, quality of food, lovingly prepared by their team, who strive to ensure, where possible, that all food is sourced locally, and whose excellent knowledge and service of teas served, is second to none.”

She added: “The tradition of afternoon tea has never been stronger, with Tea Guild members busier than ever. More and more people are taking time out to enjoy afternoon tea.”

Lindsay Judd, manager, Bettys Tea Rooms, said: “We’re very proud to be members of The Tea Guild, and to be given The Tea Guild’s Top Tea Place 2012 Award is a huge honour – we’re absolutely delighted.”

London’s Top Afternoon Tea Award went to the The Athenaeum Hotel, while the The Tea Guild’s Top City and Country Hotel Tea Award 2012 was awarded to Pennyhill Park Hotel & Spa in Surrey.

The Tea Guild Awards are now in their 27th year.