Honey Bees are an important piece of the environmental jigsaw as they pollinate flowers and crops as well as provide honey for human consumption. A Honey Bee is responsible for pollinating around 10% of the UK’s pollination crops – which translates to pollinating approximately £69m worth of crops per year…for free! Not only do they(and other pollinators) provide such a fantastic free service, an average UK beehive produces 35 – 40lbs of honey per year which equates to approximately 17kgs.
Unfortunately, there is a very real concern about the declining numbers of these wonderful creatures due to habitat loss, pesticides, disease and climate change. Thankfully, governments are looking to redress the problem with long term strategies and plans. How can we help? In terms of encouraging pollinators, plant more flowers, increase space for wildflowers and, for honey bees especially, buy more honey! The fact that there are nearly double the amount of beekeepers managing somewhere around 63% more colonies now than in 2008 is encouraging and this trend needs to continue.
Many of these colonies live in the type of beehives known as skeps that are the inspiration behind our recently introduced Beehive Kettle. Beehive Kettles are available in Copper or Chrome with models suitable for electric or gas stoves. They combine the Edwardian handcrafting techniques that are synonymous to the Richmond Kettle brand with the style and class fit for high tea with the finest of visitors. Made in the heart of England the kettles have a whistle song and high gloss finish that provide a magnificent accessory for any gas or electric stove top.
With honey, tea and kettles in mind, here’s the perfect recipe to use as we rapidly approach Autumn and cosy nights by the fire.
1 Tablespoon of lemon juice;
2 Tablespoon of honey;
1/2 cup or more of hot water;
Optional: add a sliver or two of fresh ginger.
Put you Richmond Kettle on the stove to boil!;
Put honey and lemon juice into a tea cup or mug;
Add a sliver or two of fresh ginger(optional);
Add hot water and stir;
Add more lemon juice, honey or hot water to taste.
Sitback, relax and start thinking of your Christmas List as you while away a well earned break! Did we mention Christmas? Yes, we did as the last thing we want you to do is miss out on ordering any of our range of Richmond Kettles in time for Christmas delivery. Our art is a joy to behold but quality – beautiful handmade Great British quality – takes time to come together and, to avoid disappointment, ordering early will ensure a Merry and Happy Christmas for you and yours!
Don’t forget to keep in touch via our Facebook page for all the latest news about Richmond Kettle Company.
Summer is here, British schools have just closed for the 6-weeks holidays and the crowds are already flocking to the seaside to relax and enjoy family time together. Two popular counties where you can find many holidaymakers are Devon and Cornwall. Both have beautiful coves, beaches and crystal clear sea water with coasts to both North and South of the counties. Although renowned for surfing and gorgeous sunsets they are both home of a very British tradition – the Cream Tea.
A cream tea is a form of afternoon tea that consists of tea taken with a combination of scones, clotted cream and jam. History suggests that the tradition of eating bread with cream dates back to the eleventh century at Tavistock Abbey in Devon but finding a cream tea as an item on the menu of quaint, local tearooms belongs to the 20th Century. Perhaps the tearooms were inspired by Richmond’s wonderful tea kettles?
In the past, there has been a subtle difference in the type of bread used – Cornwall Cream Teas were served with a type of slightly sweet white bread roll, known as a “Cornish Split” rather than a scone. Nowadays, the consensus has been the scone but the burning question – and one that is often discussed and mused over – is which do you spread first, the jam or the cream? In Devon, locals prefer to split their scone and cover each side with clotted cream and then add the jam on top(a Devonshire Cream Tea). Whereas, in Cornwall, locals prefer to split the scone, spread with jam(usually strawberry) and finally top it all off with a spoonful of clotted cream(Cornish Cream Tea).
Either way, at Richmond Kettle Company, we know that any combination of lovely scones, jam and cream will be better off accompanied by a beautiful pot of freshly brewed tea boiled by a handmade Richmond Copper Kettle!
With this in mind, it’s Competition Time – here’s your chance to win one of our wonderful Richmond Tea Towels via our Facebook page. All you have to do is post a picture with your Richmond Kettle and share the photo to our page. The three we feel best capture the essence of Summer and Richmond Kettles will receive a Richmond Kettle Company Tea Towel before they go on general sale. Competition closes on Friday 10th August, 2018 and a winners will be announced on Wednesday 15th August, 2018.
Celebrated almost everywhere in the world, Mother’s Day is one of those special events on the calendar that is celebrated around the world.
This celebration honours Mothers and Motherhood across the globe, not always on the same date and sometimes celebrating simply ‘Mother Earth’ or ‘Mother Church’.
Mothering Sunday though is universal in that the act of Mothering is to be celebrated and in the UK falls on March 11th this year.
Here in the UK, typically we try to make the day a special day for our Mothers.
In America it seems to have all started with Ann Reeves Jarvis who was a social activist, she was founder of Mothers’Day Work Clubs. Ann had a friend called Julia Ward Howe, who had first advocated in 1870 for the idea of a Mother’s Day as a call for mothers throughout the world to work together for peace.
The celebration of Motherhood was at the core of creating the idea of recognising, appreciating and celebrating at least one day in the year all that being a mother represents.
There cannot be a more special start to the day than perhaps Breakfast in Bed accompanied by a lovely cup of tea.
Whilst Ann Jarvis did not like commercialism, I think she too would be in favour of a nice cup of tea to start the
day. Such an easy pleasant way to start a day, just one of those simple moments we can share with a loved one.
Life is all about the moments.
The moment our kettles whistle leads to the moment you enjoy a break, share time with friends and family and a hundred other moments, savour each one – At Richmond, we believe we make the finest ‘Copper Tea Kettles’.
The perfect way to start the day and it all starts with how we prepare the tea, boiling the water in a hand-made copper tea kettle is the best!
Using less energy and creating a better flavour too. Our kettle designs have a place in any kitchen.
We are pleased to present our Richmond Kettle Company Collection, helping people enjoy lifes’ little moments… in style!
We at Richmond Kettle Company would like to take the opportunity to wish all Mothers a very Happy Mother’s Day.
Whilst pondering what might take our followers fancy this month I came across the delightful piece below about the history of the tea kettle. I thought you would all enjoy it as much as me. It really is a lovely read.
Few things more readily evoke the cosy comforts of the cottage kitchen than the image of a burnished copper kettle singing and bubbling on a hob or range. When tea came to Britain in the second half of the 17th century, it was a luxury only the rich could afford. The price steadily declined throughout the 18th century and took a sharp dip in the 19th century when the removal of importing monopolies opened up trade with the Orient. By the time Victoria was firmly seated on her throne, tea was served above and below stairs.
From the first, kettles were an indispensable item of tea-making equipment. Originally, the word kettle was used for any flat-bottomed, lidded pan used for cooking, as opposed to the round-bottomed cauldron. Kettles as we know them today evolved alongside tea drinking. Before tea became the national drink, water had always been heated in large iron cauldrons suspended over an open fire. Since nobody could be bothered to hang about while a cauldron came to the boil when they fancied a cup of tea, special water kettles were developed. They had spouts for pouring and to let out steam so they didn’t boil over.
Since tea was originally only for the wealthy, so were the first kettles, which were usually made of silver. As 18th-century tea drinking was a fashionable social habit, kettles weren’t confined to the kitchen, and usually came complete with stands and heaters so they could be used in the drawing room. While the lower classes were eventually able to afford tea, their funds never stretched to silver. Copper was used instead because it was cheap, bright and an excellent conductor of heat. Copper kettles were flat-bottomed to stand on the newly developed hob grate or range. Their shape was subject to experimentation.
Wide, low kettles were tried at the end of the 18th century. As much more metal was in contact with the heat, they boiled quickly, but they were unwieldy and difficult to pour. Semi-circular half-kettles were put on a trivet with their flat side snuggling close to the grate, but their sharp angles made them difficult to air. Neither type caught on.
What we think of today as the traditional kettle shape, with its rounded shoulders, cylindrical or pot-bellied body and spout shaped like the neck of an advancing angry goose, proved hard to beat.
Early copper kettles had all-metal handles since some people still hung them over a fire to boil. Sometimes the handles were hinged. Later ones had handles with grips of wood or bone to protect the user’s hands from burning.The lovely warm patina that comes with age adds value and isn’t easily faked; ideally, copper kettles should glow quietly, not shine with metal polish.
To read the whole article, see the link below.
So, I hope you enjoyed that and with that in mind, I have included a picture of one of our very own ‘Richmond Heritage’ kettles being spun in our spinning barn using the same technique’s of old.
At the summer solstice, the days are longest and the nights are shortest, with day-length decreasing as the season progresses after the solstice.
The date of the beginning of summer varies according to climate, tradition and culture.
When it is summer in the Northern Hemisphere, it is winter in the Southern Hemisphere, and vice versa.
Originally introduced as a limited-edition kettle, it proved so popular we have now added it to our main range.
The fact that it is silver plated and commemorates our Queens Jubilee makes it quintessentially English and exceptional both as a treat for oneself
or as gift for a loved one.
We hope you will love it as much as we do, and as the nights begin to draw in again, pop the kettle on, put your feet up and embrace the impending season
Copper is the key ingredient to our kettles. It’s soft and highly conductive properties make it perfect for spinning and perfect for use as a stove top kettle because it heats up very quickly. Historically, our organic copper was mined in the United Kingdom, from Cornwall, Cheshire and Scotland. Copper had been mined in the UK since the roman times and had vast uses from cookware to coins, but in more recent decades unfortunately supply has not met demand. Our copper is UK sourced but imported from Germany. We believe that aesthetically, copper is magnificent material and you can learn more about copper here.
From copper sheets, our craftsmen cut, stamp, form, punch and press the parts. These parts are then placed on hotplates and the hand-tinning process can commence. A flux is added to the surface before liquid tin is brushed on. During this process, the tin binds with the surface of the copper creating an integral surface for the inside of the kettle. The tinning process is fundamental for two key reasons: firstly, untreated copper will oxidise quickly in contact with water; secondly (and worse of all), the taste of your perfectly brewed cup of tea may be jeopardised!
Once the pieces of our copper jigsaw puzzle have been tinned, the craftsmen can begin the spinning process. Spinning is the process of manipulating metal using a lathe and different levered tools. Unlike wood turning, no material is removed in the spinning of metal. As the copper discs spin, they can be manipulated into shape by using the lever tools against a chuck. It is common for spinning in today’s age to be completed by CNC machinery but the organic properties of copper (being soft and having weak spots) can make it difficult to complete using CNC machines. The best results for spinning copper come from the hand spinning process where the craftsman can feel the inconsistencies and work his techniques personally to each individual piece.
Following the spinning of the parts, there are a series of pressing, crimping, cutting and soldering processes to take place before our kettles begin to resemble kettles. We use pure grade silver solder for our kettles to ensure they stand the test of time. The kettle parts must be heated in excess of 400 C allow the molten silver to create a seal. Throughout these stages, the kettles undergo three sets of integrity trials in the various parts before being hand polished using a polishing wheel.
Most of the kettle parts are now ready for assembly. For our chrome models, we have to send the parts out to be chrome plated first (that is a whole other story for another day), but then assembly can begin. During the assembly process, a further two integrity trials are completed as well as two more cleaning and polishing processes. All of these processes are completed by hand. In total there are over 80 processes involved to make the kettles from over 20 different parts.