National anthem 'snub' trio thrown out of tearoom

Anita Atkinson Ms Atkinson has thousands of pieces of memorabilia

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A royalist County Durham tearoom owner told how she threw three women out after they refused to stand when the national anthem was played.

Anita Atkinson opened Royal Teas in Stanhope in time for the Queen's Diamond Jubilee and to display some of her huge collection of memorabilia.

The national anthem is played at 3pm each day and Ms Atkinson said she expected her customers to stand.

So when three women refused to do so, she made them leave.

'Rubbish coffee'

Ms Atkinson said: "It's meant to be funny and it's a little quirky part of the tearoom that we have got.

"At 3 o'clock every day we play the national anthem and we expect people to stand.

"It tells you that in the legend on the menu. The whole thing is just a bit of British eccentricity.

"But these three ladies vociferously refused to stand and made it known that they were anti-monarchist, so God only knows why they came into the tearoom in the first place. So I threw them out."

She said she believed the trio had been surprised to be thrown out.

"They told me my coffee was rubbish but it is a tearoom so I don't care."

Ms Atkinson's collection of royal memorabilia runs to thousands of items.

The toilets in the tearoom have been turned into thrones and there are cardboard cut-outs of members of the Royal Family along with many other pieces.

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