Tea breaks helping nation through pandemic, survey suggests

More than half of people in Wales agree taking regular tea breaks has helped the nation get through the pandemic in a nationwide survey commissioned by NHS Charities Together.

It comes as the charity is urging people to join in the NHS Big Tea on July 5.

The research highlights the central place tea breaks have, their increased importance during lockdown, the benefits they bring and the rituals people have around them in Wales.

Key findings show over three quarters of people in Wales have a regular tea break as part of their daily routine – 18 per cent higher than the rest of Britain.

Nearly three in five people in Wales feel the British tradition of tea breaks has helped us as a nation to get through the pandemic so far, compared to 46 per cent of people across other British nations.

In Wales, the rituals and pet peeves around our tea breaks are almost as important as having them.

Of those who take a regular tea break, 59 per cent use a favourite cup or mug, 34 per cent have something to eat with the hot drink like a biscuit or a piece of cake, nearly a quarter put the milk in first, 16 per cent have the break at the same time every day and 15 per cent use the same spoon throughout the day.

A total of 46 per cent think it is unacceptable to leave the teabag in when drinking; 42 per cent feel it’s unacceptable to use the same teabag twice and many are repulsed by the idea of making hot drinks in the microwave, with 32 per cent agreeing that this is unacceptable.

NHS Charities Together has published the research to launch the NHS Big Tea.

Taking place on the NHS’s birthday on July 5, the charity is urging the public to join the nation’s biggest tea break and be part of a national outpouring of thanks while raising money for the NHS.

Everyone can take part by raising a mug or holding their own virtual or physical tea party at 3pm on that day or at any time that suits them on or around that date.

Funds raised will increase the practical and emotional support available to NHS staff, patients and volunteers as they continue to battle the Covid crisis and start down the long road to recovery.

Morrisons is supporting the NHS Big Tea this year and will be urging its customers and staff to take part.

Ellie Orton, CEO of NHS Charities Together, said: “These results really chime with me.

"I was brought up with a regular ‘cuppa-tea time’ as a family when I was young and tea breaks have helped me through all the difficulties and challenges of the past year and I know that is the same for so many other people as well.

“After so many months of isolation for many, The NHS Big Tea is a chance for everyone to join up with friends, family and neighbours, for communities to come together and thank NHS staff and each other for everything they have done over the past year, all while having a great time and raising vital funds to support NHS staff, volunteers and patients.

“However, you take your tea, coffee, or hot chocolate, we would love you to join in the NHS Big Tea this year and be part of an outpouring of thanks for everything the NHS has done for us. I draw the line at leaving the bag in though.”

To sign up for your own NHS Big Tea event and receive the support pack, visit www.nhscharitiestogether.co.uk

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