Stephen Fry and Felicity Kendal back campaign to bring back workplace tea rounds

The research, released by Royal Voluntary Service, to coincide with its annual Great Brew Break event, identified the death of the communal cuppa despite Britons downing an average of five cups of tea or coffee a day at work, with 44 per cent consuming five or more cups in a working day.

The findings indicate that the demise of the tea round may stem from the top – 40 per cent of workers claim their boss never makes them a cuppa. 

A third of workers admit they would rather just make themselves a drink and get back to work and many are resorting to underhand tactics to do just that. 

Common excuses deployed to get out of the tea round include waiting until people aren’t around, offering when people have just made themselves a drink and making rubbish teas and coffees so they are not asked again.

The charity, which is raising funds to support lonely older people, is calling on the nation’s bosses to lead the way in this crusade to save the tea round by pledging to make tea for their colleagues for the Great Brew Break fundraiser. 

And putting the kettle on could benefit them it seems. Some 37 per cent of workers say regular communication with colleagues is important in the workplace and 41 per cent think taking short breaks during the working day is essential for concentration.

As a nation built on the tradition of a cup of tea and its enduring social warmth, the looming death of the tea round represents a significant shift in culture. 

Stephen Fry, who is also supporting Great Brew Break, commented: “A cup of tea is so collectively comforting to people in Britain, that its power can never be underestimated. My tea intake has increased considerably while writing my book and I will certainly be raising a mug to Great Brew Break in April. No matter who you are, a good brew break helps keep you going.”

Great Brew Break events will take place from 28 April to 4 May, with bosses making the tea, vintage tea parties and simple tea breaks. Royal Voluntary Service will host an online roll call of all bosses who make tea for their colleagues and as part of the campaign, the charity is writing directly FTSE 100 bosses, appealing to them to put the kettle on to raise funds.

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