While tea grew wild in parts of China and India before organised cultivation of the crop took place, it was drunk in the monasteries by monks as an aid to meditation.

Tea was introduced to the British Royal family by a Portuguese Princess ‘Catherine of Braganza’ who married into the royal family in the sixteenth century. Included in her dowry was a chest of tea!

Queen Elizabeth enjoys specially supplied Darjeeling, Earl Grey and Yunnan tea. We know that Prince Charles is an avid tea drinker and favours a variety of white tea.

The world’s most famous monk the Dalai Lama continues the priestly involvement with tea as is shown in the accompanying photograph.

The Beatles were known to enjoy a cuppa and many well known singers drink tea as a part of their pre show ritual – perhaps it improves their vocal chords!

And what test cricket match would be complete without a cup of tea for the players at the ‘tea interval’?

Dalai Lama  Queen Prince Charles  Beetles  Hilary Clinton