Thompson’s Family Teas, the family behind Punjana, Northern Ireland’s favourite cup of tea has teamed up with Belfast City Council and the Ulster Hall for a series of tea dances on 3rd and 4th December.
Over the last few years, the Ulster Hall has showcased an evening retro tea dance. This year’s Punjana Retro Tea Dance will feature jiving, swinging and jitterbugging with live performances from the Wireless Mystery Theatre, a retro market, 1940’s hair and make-up specialists, a vintage photo booth and of course cakes, treats and cups of award winning Punjana tea.
Tea Dances have been an important part of Belfast’s social scene since the Second World War, acting as crucial moral builders during troubled times. The Ulster Hall itself, host to Charles Dickens, Led Zeppelin and the Dalai Lama, has been the Belfast venue for post war tea dances. During World War II, Belfast was the first port for American soldiers before the battlefields of Europe. They danced with such enthusiasm that one night the floor gave way – to keep morale high, the American Embassy paid for a new solid oak replacement.
In these post war years, brothers James and Tony Thompson were responsible for the birth of the Punjana tea brand. James was passing the Gillespie statue in Comber Square, Co. Down, when he noticed an inscription relating to the ‘Punjab’, as India was considered the home of good quality tea – the name Punjana was born.
Joint Managing Director of Thompson’s Family Teas, Ross Thompson comments: “Three generations of Thompson’s have been blending tea in Belfast for over 100 years now, it’s important we remember our heritage and invest in local traditions especially events like these tea dances that bring people of all ages together – we are delighted that Punjana is helping revive a classic Belfast experience.”
Belfast City Council proudly hosts several tea dances throughout the year, free of charge to the city’s older citizens. Cllr Bernie Kelly from Belfast City Council Older People’s Steering Group comments: “It’s great to see local brands supporting us, especially Punjana, it’s a great fit for the tea dances which are so popular.”
To find out more about the Punjana Retro Tea Dance visit www.waterfront.co.ukk. Tickets still available to buy at £8.00 each. Over 18s only.