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group of young people taking part in filming over a cup of tea

Tea with a friend is the perfect blend

The humble cup of tea is a wonderful accompaniment to spending time with friends, and it is a large part of people’s heritage and culture.

Whether it’s a cup of traditional English breakfast tea, matcha, pink or chai, it is estimated that 10million cups are brewed and sipped every day in the UK, according to a study by the UK Tea & Infusions Association.

London’s Horniman Museum, established in 1901 using money earned from the Horniman family’s tea trading business, will be hosting a tea exhibition later this year and has invited Bollo Brook Youth Centre in Acton to be a part of that.

Creative enterprise

The centre recently received funding from Ealing Council, in partnership with Old Oak and Park Royal Development Corporation (OPDC) as part of the borough’s Creative Enterprise Zone scheme, to produce a film about tea and young people from Acton.

This will form part of the museum’s exhibition and was partly produced by young people from the centre.

Colin Brent has been a youth worker at the centre for 15 years and has worked with the centre users on a number of films in the past.

He said: “We were approached by the museum as we have done work with them in the past and they asked us to do this film. Without the funding support this just wouldn’t have been possible.

“We were sceptical at first if there would be enough interest from our young people but it turns out a lot of them, particularly those of Arab descent, spend a lot of time visiting tea houses and socialising.”

The 30-minute film will feature groups of young people enjoying time together over tea, chatting about gender relations, education, family and other subjects. You are also likely to recognise many Park Royal and Acton tea rooms in the video, or perhaps discover new ones to visit.

‘A huge achievement’

Councillor Louise Brett, Ealing Council’s cabinet member for decent living incomes, said: “This is such a huge achievement for these young people to have their work showcased and be seen by thousands of people from all over. I am really impressed with the work that has gone into this and it is an absolute pleasure to support such innovative projects through our Creative Enterprise Zone.”

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