Homes and Antiques Magazine - - JOURNAL -

Founded by a Swiss baker, and now a York­shire icon, we ex­plore the de­li­cious his­tory of Bet­tys

Although there’s no ar­gu­ing the im­por­tance of stock­ings above the fire­place or a glit­ter­ing tree laden with dec­o­ra­tions, Christ­mas just wouldn’t be the event that it is with­out an abun­dance of fes­tive del­i­ca­cies. Whether crumbly mince pies stu ed with plump fruit, or el­e­gant boxes of fes­tive choco­lates, Bet­tys of York­shire has been bak­ing and sell­ing mouth-wa­ter­ing treats for nearly 100 years – although the iden­tity of the orig­i­nal ‘Betty’ still re­mains a mys­tery…

In 1907, Swiss con­fec­tioner Frederick Bel­mont came to the UK, and in 1919, he opened his first cafe in Har­ro­gate. It was so suc­cess­ful (tak­ing £30 on the first day of trade), that Bel­mont went on to open sev­eral other branches across York­shire, in­clud­ing a swish tea room in York in­spired by the in­te­ri­ors of the Queen Mary cruise liner. Af­ter sev­eral years of cake-based tri­umphs, Bet­tys merged with lux­ury tea and co ee com­pany, Tay­lors, which went on to sup­ply the tea rooms with de­li­cious blends. Now Bet­tys is an in­ter­na­tional brand, with sev­eral cafes in the North East and a pres­ti­gious cook­ery school to its name. Not to men­tion, some of the best mince pies in the busi­ness! * 0800 456 1919; bet­

TOP The fa­mous Bet­tys tea room in Har­ro­gate BELOW LEFT The in­te­rior of Bel­mont’s rst cafe at 9 Cam­bridge Cres­cent, Har­ro­gate BELOW RIGHT A c1923 ad­vert for Bet­tys ‘Full Strength Liqueur Choco­lates’

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