#beatonstearooms: What's Inside a Beatons?

Curious? All these you will find...
High Tea, scones and gorgeous cake,
Bowls of soup or stew
Fine coffee, lots of loose-leaf teas
Our house blend - Beatons Brew
Come in for breakfast, lunch or tea
And lovely things on toast
Which of our daily specials
All home-made will you like most?
Fresh restorative food and drink
And books to feed the mind
With titles chosen to delight
All these you will find...
                                                                        ... inside Beatons Blandford  

#Blandford: Beatons Blandford Launch!

MD Patrick welcomes & thanks everyone
The Dress Code said 'a touch of sparkle' and Blandford could have started a fourth great fire with the glints of diamonds and bling on Friday night!

We'll be creating some day-time sparkle on Saturday 13th December from 10 to 10.30 am and the chance to sample some of our signature Carrot Cake as well as hear the two winning poems from our 2nd Annual Poetry Competition... oh and a warning about what happens if you eat too much cake, Dorset's most famous vet signing copies of her book and a few tips about loose leaf tea!

In the meantime, here are a few pics from our Launch Soirée and Awards Ceremony. Thanks from Patrick and all the team here, to the guests who came and indulged, and gave us such a lovely welcome and to everyone who has been involved in the project. Especially the TNT man who delivered our new oven (with only hours before fresh miniature scones and hot canapés were due to be served!)...

Sparkling crowd at Beatons Blandford Launch Party

There's so much to tell, but you know, sometimes it's best to keep your own memories and just allow the pictures to convey what they will of the atmosphere.

We have stacks of photos of smiling faces holding glasses of sparkle, looking elegant and relaxed. Many of them have gone off to the local press and who knows, some may even grace the 'Society' pages of some of our local glossies...

The music from Sorrentino was beautiful and we managed to quieten the clinking of glasses and social chatter to nothing so we could all enjoy a medley of pieces from 'My Fair Lady' (Cecil Beaton designed the costumes for the 1964 film).

Regrets? Only that I didn't book a professional photographer to take better pictures (lesson for next ime)... And that I didn't take one of Beatons Blandford Manager Ben and his kitchen staff's amazing food - the talk of twitter - or our newly trained Front of House team navigating through the crowds with them! But here's a weary but proud Ben and our youngest investor in Beatons Blandford - Tisbury cook Harry Mcgookin - basking in the success of the evening as it drew to a close.

Winning Poems from Our 2014 Poetry Competition

David Bamber reads his winning poem
So here they are! The three winning entries on the theme of 'Restoration' - which we encouraged poets to interpret loosely (and they did!)  Sadly, we only had half the entries we did last year (limiting entries to the UK and running the competition later in the year may have been a contributory factor).

At a splendid Launch Soirée and Awards Ceremony on Friday 5th December at Beatons Blandford David Bamber had the thrill of receiving his award from internationally acclaimed poet, travel writer and Blandford Forum resident Paul Hyland.

Hear the poem on Saturday 13th Dec from 10 to 10.30 am
at Beatons Blandford  2 Market Place

David Bamber's winning entry (adults) tells the Blandford based story of its Great Fire - throbbing with rhythm and rhyme.

David spent many hours researching and crafting his entry.

Judges said, 'This is a great description of Blandford's fire. Relevant, well written with a natural flow. Good metre.' 'A strong narrative and a well handled 'arc', I like the personification of the fire and the water and felt the conflict very effective'.

The runner up in the competition was Russ Berry of Coventry for his poem 'To the Blackthorn' (scroll to end to read) and we added an extra 'Highly Commended' prize and certificate to London's Charles Evans whose poem 'Restoration' vividly described a 'restorative experience' at bath time... slightly too adult for our website unfortunately!

Anna Wilson is the seventeen year old who entered our 'Young Aspiring Wordsmiths Category'. We're not going to hide the fact that she was the only one who entered. That alone makes her a winner in our eyes, although our judges looked critically at her entry before deciding to award her the prize.

Anna's entry 'The Returned Timepiece' is clearly influenced by the focus on the war in this Centenary period of WW1 and has a rich sense of nostalgia about it.

You can hear Anna's poem being read at our Free Open House on Saturday morning, 13th December 10 - 10.30

Judges said, 'Very relevant in this year... very emotive and well thought out.' 'A promising reflective poem.'

Runner up, Russ Berry wrote 'To the Blackthorn', reminding us of the nature poetry of John Clare and shifts the sense of Restoration to the seasons. Russ couldn't get down from Coventry to the launch but can't wait to get down to Beatons to use up his voucher!

Paul Hyland read the poem on Russ's behalf.

Beatons Blandford: A Restorative Experience for a Restoration Town!

I'm Ben, and as Manager of Beatons Tearoom and Bookshop Blandford Forum I'm delighted to welcome you to our online 'home'. We're open seven days a week at Greyhound House in the heart of the Market Place. In keeping with this restoration town, we most enjoy providing a 'restorative experience' to the local Dorset community.

Full contact and location details here.

Our house blend of loose-leaf tea is the reviving 'Beatons Brew'. Why not pop in and have a pot, with a large slice of our signature carrot cake?

Yes, we also have free wi-fi and the morning paper, along with 'browsing books' to dip into. We're very proud to have become part of the 'busy Blandford' community and are incredibly grateful to the support of local businesses, the fantastic local press and our body of regular customers (they know who they are!)

Grand Monsieur - for those who serve
Blandford Forum has some real treasures up its sleeves.  Of particular interest is Blandford Fashion Museum - a tardis-like building packed full of costumes and designer clothes and accessories. There's a thriving Public Library which hosts three writing groups and two 'Chatterbox' groups - all of which use poetry. We've also delighted to welcome our new neighbours 4ever Vintage next door.

Dorset is a very literary county too, as you'll see from our Dorset Authors page. And of course, Blandford has very strong links with the army - it's home to The Signals Regiment. We extend a special welcome to the residents - permanent and temporary - of Blandford Camp and even created our hearty Grand Monsieur in their honour!

Why not make your trip to Blandford extra special and book or come in for one of our amazingly restorative Afternoon High Teas?

Ben Moxham
Tearooms Manager