The Highland Dance Teachers Association of England was founded in 1973 to enable teachers of highland dancing based in England to discuss technical questions and other dance-related issue to their mutual benefit and support. The first Annual General Meeting was held on 31st March 1974 with 15 members attending the meeting. Since its inception, the HDTAE has grown to more than double its membership and organizes annual competitions, lectures, and workshops around England. In 1979 the HDTAE became a represented members of the Scottish Official Board of Highland Dancing (SOBHD), the supervisory board of the majority of highland dancing organisations.
In order to achieve these aims the HDTAE: