Hens nights. At their worst they can be oily-stripper filled, dildo-ridden nights fuelled by violently coloured cocktails which end up in the gutter on King Street. At the other end of the Hen’s party spectrum is the vintage high tea, replete with hot water urn and croquette kit. Such was the glorious Hen’s function we attended today at Rippon Lea’s Tennis Pavilion. I can’t believe I’ve never in my nearly 30 years gone to Rippon Lea which has a definite ‘Picnic on Hanging Rock’ vibe going on. Quiet, dense foliage. Beautifully maintained heritage home. Cue the panpipes and enjoy this vicarious dream of a hen’s day celebration.

Details from the entrance cupola of Rippon Lea.

We enjoyed afternoon tea in the Tennis Pavilion, enjoying vintage china piled high with salmon and cucumber sandwiches, pumpkin tarts, cupcakes, strawberry tarts, scones and tea. Oh, and champagne.

I’d never tried my hand at croquet before….

…but as you can see I took to it pretty quickly.

Is this not a beautiful hen’s day out?