My afternoon tea with Robin Hood
I had been looking forward to my date with Robin Hood for some time but the question was, where can you go with our most famous outlaw in Nottingham’s city centre when you fancy a quintessentially English ‘Afternoon Tea’? A fine, traditional Notts pub of course!
I was met at The Ned Ludd in Friar Lane by Ade Andrews of the Robin Hood Town Tour. Ade was looking – and acting – every bit like his alter ego, Robin Hood. It is a part which Ade plays so well that it was hard to remember that it was not the real Robin I was having tea with but a finalist in the VisitEngland Tourism Superstar Awards.
It was also hard to imagine that Robin and I were having ‘Afternoon Tea’ in the Ned Ludd – a stylish yet traditional pub which opened its doors in October 2013 in the heart of Nottingham, conveniently located between the city’s captivating Castle and the Old Market Square. While it is a venue which more conventionally serves up traditional real ales, craft beers and real ciders, along with tempting cocktails and imaginative British food, it is also an excellent stop-off for Afternoon Tea with a twist.
Served on a traditional English fine bone china cake stand, the scones, cakes and selection of fresh sandwiches on offer were truly delicious. We selected the warm beef brisket on brown bread but could easily have gone for the Ned Ludd ham hock and tomato, mature English cheddar cheese and sweet stout onion chutney, smoked salmon or egg mayo and cress.
As well as the speciality teas – or coffee if you prefer – there was also the option to go for a tipple that is a little stronger. While we didn’t partake in it at the time, you could try the Chelsea Rose, a special cocktail made from gin, elderflower cordial, fresh berries and apple juice which is actually served in a teapot – a great disguise for your guilty secret perhaps?
Alternatively, add a glass of Chapel Down English sparkling wine, which we did sample and found to be a surprisingly good challenger to the ever-popular prosecco, cava or champagne of our European cousins.
So, if you find yourself somewhere between seeing the sights of Nottingham and enjoying all of its elegant retail outlets you could not go wrong with a call-in to the Ned Ludd. Sadly, I can’t guarantee you will bump into Robin Hood, but if you have been inspired by his legend then make sure you cast your vote and help him become this year’s Visit England Tourism Superstar.
Ade is one of just 10 finalists from around the country who has been nominated for the award and voters only have until 21st March to show their support for England’s best-loved folk hero. Simply log on to www.mirror.co.uk/tourismsuperstar and cast your vote for Ade Andrews. Make sure you use the hashtags #voterobin or #tourismsuperstar on Twitter and Facebook.