Tourist trap

The date slice – I think it was date slice – was really very good, but it was about the only redeeming factor about Spencer’s of Ashbourne.

I’m not naïve most of the time. I know that tea somewhere like the middle of Ashbourne on a Sunday in August will be over-priced and not necessarily marvellous. On our way home from Leicester we tried to escape the M1 roadworks by returning by one of the other routes. I felt that one good thing about driving along ‘real’ roads would be that we could stop for some much wanted tea somewhere decent.

The parking of the car could have led to car park rage, but didn’t. The black car didn’t even try to run me down, but I bet they would have liked to. So, straight into the haven of Spencer’s tearoom in the market square.

Lovely date slice. The Bakewell tart was more treacle tart, but that could be my mistake. The pots of tea were seriously skimpy for parched throats. Milk with it was skimpier still. The staff were too busy fighting with each other to notice customers wanting to pay. I suppose that’s what you get with a tearoomful of 16-year-olds working for you.

The tearoom will have been nice and traditional once. The upstairs, which was closed, had lovely table cloths and lace and nice furniture. The open downstairs bit was more ‘burger tearoom’ style, with loud muzak.

They don’t need the tourists to return. There will be new ones tomorrow. The locals probably know of somewhere else to go. Or they buy the date loaf and take it home.

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