Today’s Newsflash



Café closes at 3pm on weekdays, during term time. This is extended to 4pm during weekends and school holidays. Visitor Centre closes at 5pm. Carpark is locked at 7pm.


Tea & Talks

Home > Teas and Talks

Taking place on Tuesdays, our Tea & Talk sessions bring you local, well-known speakers to deliver a series of talks on a variety of specialist subjects.

All talks start at 2.00pm and are 45mins – 1 hour, with tea served afterwards.

Join us at Stanwick Lakes to enjoy a natter and a brew!

Whether food, fashion, or industry piques your curiosity, our guest experts will be taking a look at various topics, particularly in relation to the local history of our lovely county of Northamptonshire.
Tickets are available to book now. There are a variety of ticket options, which range from £8-£18.50 and all include parking.
The full menu is detailed at the bottom of this page, and also at booking.

All ticket types include free parking for the duration of the event.
You can choose from:

☕ £8.00 – ‘A Tea & Talk’ includes the talk and a voucher for a hot drink at our café.

☕ £10.50 – ‘A Cream Tea & Talk’ includes the talk and a cream tea.

☕ £16.00 ‘A Two Course Lunch & Tea’ includes the talk, lunch and a hot drink.*

☕ £18.50 ‘An Afternoon Tea & Talk’ includes the talk and a full afternoon tea.

*If you opt for our two-course lunch offering alongside your talk, this is served before the talk at 12.30pm.

The full menu is detailed at the bottom of the page. Please advise us of any dietary requirements when you book your ticket.

Group discounts are available for groups over 10, with limited spaces available.

Tea & Talks 2024

Programme & Booking

You can book below. Alternatively, please book your space at the reception desk in the Visitor Centre or email

The talk What Makes a Good Story?
The date & time Tuesday 11th June – 2pm
An overview How do writers capture your interest, surprise and delight you and bring stories to a satisfying ending? Illustrating with readings of her award-winning short stories and flash fiction, author Judith Allnatt will reveal some of the ways writers craft their stories to fire readers’ imaginations. Whether you’re a keen reader or an aspiring writer, come and hear stories of to find out more about how the writer and reader together create magic from the page.

The speaker

Judith Allnatt

Judith Allnatt is an author whose novels have been featured as a Radio 5 ‘Book of the Month’ and shortlisted for the East Midlands Book Award and the Portico Prize for Literature. Her short fiction has been listed for many awards including the Commonwealth Short Story Award, Bridport Prize, Radio 4 Showcase and the Manchester Prize for Fiction. She has worked widely as a lecturer and Writer in Residence and has most recently served as a Royal Literary Fund Fellow.


The talk Philip Manfield – His life and contribution to the development of shoe making in Northampton
The date & time Tuesday 18th June – 2pm
An overview Sir Philip Manfield was a prominent local businessman, politician and public servant whose contribution to the establishment and growth of the footwear manufacturing industry is intricately linked with the history of Northampton itself. This talk will focus on his life, his work and his legacy.

The speaker

Dr Izabela Robinson

Dr Izabela Robinson worked for several years as a senior lecturer in the Business School at the University of Northampton. Since retiring she has been involved in voluntary work at the Northampton Museum and Art Gallery. This has involved researching aspects of the history of the town and notable individuals who have contributed to its development.
The talk Raunds – the Town on the Edge
The date & time Tuesday 25th June – 2pm
An overview Famous in the footwear industry, my talk is also of recent discoveries that enhance its history and future.

The speaker

Susan Copperwheat

Susan Copperwheat is a Local & Social Historian based in East Northamptonshire, and a member of Northamptonshire Heritage Forum. She has been running her own business giving unique talks for over 14 years, plus outdoor talks & tours, since 2020.
The talk Sorcerers’ Herbs
The date & time Tuesday 2nd July – 2pm
An overview This is a talk with a Harry Potter – type theme. There were many plants used for magical purposes. Mandrake was not the only dangerous plant to harvest. Beware of woodpeckers waiting to peck your eyes out! You will have to hear the talk to find out why! Plants were used for magic and in potions. Sadly, there is no guarantee that any of the spells will work.

The speaker

Michael Brown

Michael has been interested in history and gardening for as long as he can remember. He became a qualified gardener and worked his way up to become Head Gardener at the Menagerie at Horton and later Cosgrove Hall. Later he researched medieval gardens and the uses of the plants, which was very useful when he created the medieval gardens at the Prebendal Manor at Nassington, Northamptonshire.

Michael studied for his MA in Garden History at Birkbeck, London whilst he was a full-time college lecturer in Horticulture.

The talk When Olive Oil was for Earache (20th Century Food History)
The date & time Tuesday 9th July – 2pm
An overview British food changed considerably during the 20th century as a result of new technology, international influences and celebrity chefs. This talk highlights some of the key changes which have resulted in our favourite foods and how we eat today.

The speaker

Sharn Matthews

Sharn worked in and with museums for over 40 years, starting with the Wisbech and Fenland Museum and culminating in running the Grosvenor Museum, Chester. Currently she volunteers with Northampton and Oundle Museums. Most of her work has been with costume collections but she has also explored various aspects of social and decorative art history on the way. Sharn is also a keen embroiderer and lover of historic recipes.
Lunch menu

All items MUST be pre-ordered

Choose from…

Freshly made soup of the day with sourdough roll
Mushroom risotto with roquette & parmesan salad
Fish, chips & peas
Jacket potato with beef or vegan chilli

Followed by…

Apple pie and custard
Eton mess
Lemon tart & berry compote
Fresh fruit & ice cream

Other Menus

Cream Tea includes:
Homemade fruit scone, clotted cream, jam, butter and pot of tea

Afternoon Tea includes:
Finger sandwiches, fruit scone with clotted cream, jam and butter and a selection of cakes and pastries.