Where can you find a good UK farm shop?

The Telegraph kindly documented what they reckon are the best 50 farm shops across the UK.  Here’s what they said:

The Home Counties

Secretts Farm Shop – Godalming, Surrey

Village Greens Farm Shop – Dorking, Surrey

Laverstoke Park Butchers – Overton, Hampshire

Warborne Organic Farm Shop – Lymington, Hampshire

Windsor Farm Shop – Old Windsor, Berkshire

Farrowby Farm New -  Hinxworth, Hertfordshire

Franklins Free Range Poultry & Game – Sandy, Bedfordshire

The South East

Canterbury Farmers’ Market – Canterbury, Kent

Court Gardens Farm – Ditchling, East Sussex

The South West

Sheepdrove Organic Farm Family Butcher – Bristol

Kimber’s Farm – Charlton Musgrove, Somerset

Bramble and Sage Home Farm – Sutton Montis, Somerset

Pitney Farm Shop Glebe Farm – Langport, Somerset

Daylesford Organic – Daylesford, Near Kingham, Gloucestershire

Pythouse Kitchen Garden & Café -  Tisbury, Wiltshire

Allington Farm Shop – Chippenham, Wiltshire

Everleigh Farm Shop – Everleigh, Marlborough, Wiltshire

Long Crichel Bakery – Long Crichel, Wimborne, Dorset

Washingpool Farm – North Allington, Bridport, Dorset

Home Farm Shop – Tarrant Gunville, Blandford Forum, Dorset

Riverford Farm Shop – Staverton, Totnes, Devon

Wales & Shropshire

Ty-Talgarth Organics – Nantymoel, Bridgend, South Wales

Hootons Home-grown – Gwydryn hir, Brynsiencyn, Anglesey

Rhug Farm Shop – Rhug Estate, Corwen, Denbighshire

Ludlow Food Centre – Bromfield, Ludlow, Shropshire

East Anglia

La Hogue Farm Shop – Chippenham, Ely, Cambridgeshire

Walsingham Farm Shop – Guild Street, Walsingham, Norfolk

East Midlands & The North

Welbeck Farm Shop – Worksop, Nottinghamshire

Low Sizergh Barn & Farm Shop – Sizergh, Kendal, Cumbria

Westmorland Services Farm Shop – On the M6 northbound and southbound, at Tebay, just north of J38, Cumbria

Plumgarths Farm Shop – Lakelands Food Park, Kendal, Cumbria

Pink Pig Farm – Holme Hall, Holme, Scunthorpe, Lincolnshire

The Hollies Farm Shop – Forest Road, Little Budworth, Cheshire

Chatsworth Farm Shop – Stud Farm, Pilsley, Bakewell, Derbyshire

Claremont Farm Shop – Old Clatterbridge Road, Bebington, Wirral

Moorhouse Farm Shop – Stannington, Morpeth, Northumberland

North Acomb Farm – Stocksfield, Northumberland

Brocksbushes Farm – Nr. Corbridge, Northumberland

Bashall Barn -  Bashall Town, Clitheroe, Lancashire

Newby Hall Farm Shop – Langthorpe, Boroughbridge, North Yorkshire

Ainsty Farm Shop – Green Hammerton, North Yorkshire

Well done to all the farm shops that made the listing.  My rural online dating site www.muddymatches.co.uk was a farm diversifcation project so I understand the hard work that is involved in setting this kind of rural business up.  We were delighted when we were featured in the Telegraph back in 2007 – Truly, Mudly, Deeply – and it did wonders for business with thousands of rural singles signing up to meet like-minded country people.  Here’s hoping it does the same for all the farm shops listed above!

Posted under Places to Visit, Rural businesses

This post was written by Lucy on April 30, 2009

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More Cider with Roger

Earlier in the month I posted an entry called Cider with Roger encouraging you to visit Land’s End Farm, where Roger Wilkins produces his famous farmhouse cider.  By coincidence, I recently stumbled across a video about him and I just had to share it with you.

This beautifully shot film is the perfect antidote to a stressful day:

Posted under Awards, Countryside Organisations, Places to Visit, Things to Do

This post was written by Lucy on September 27, 2008

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Cider with Roger

Deep in the heart of Somerset, Land’s End Farm, where Roger Wilkins makes his farmhouse cider, is a bit of a gem and, if you successfully manage to navigate the winding narrow roads that lead there you’ll probably be in need of a drink.

When Emma and I paid Roger a visit last November, he was busy pressing apples but stopped briefly to indicate where the half pint glasses were, and then pretty much left us to get on with it.  This is a ‘no frills’ traditional ciderhouse with just dry and sweet farmhouse cider on offer.  If you want medium, you can blend it yourself.

Roger

Roger

It might have been 11am, but we were by no means the first arrivals.  Cider in hand, we tentatively sat down at the wooden table, where we got chatting to Frank and Gibby, two lovely old boys who regularly make the trip up to Land’s End Farm from Glastonbury to have a bit of a yarn and stock up on cider at £5/gallon.  Roger also sells cheddar and stilton cheeses, as well as vegetables, eggs, chutneys and pickles, all of which are produced locally.  Our new friends kindly shared a plate of his cheddar with us, which was the perfect accompaniment for the dry cider.

Frank, Gibby, Lucy and Emma

Frank, Gibby, Lucy and Emma

The cider itself was delicious.  Slightly suspicious of the stuff after too much Diamond White in my teens, I was pleasantly surprised by this flat and fruity liquid.  Don’t be fooled by how easy it is to drink though; at 6.5% you don’t want more than half a pint if you’re the one who’s got to navigate your way back to the main road!

The key to its flavour is in its purity.  The apples are picked, left to mature for a bit and then crushed.  The resulting pulp, or ‘pomace’, is then added to the press, layer-on-layer and wrapped in hessian.  Once this has done its job, the freshly pressed juice is piped into large vats, where it is left to ferment naturally and then mature.  The pressed pomace, which is solid by now, is then sold on for cattle feed.  No water is used and the only thing that might be added is saccharin if Roger is making the sweet cider.  And – give or take the odd detail and a few technical terms – that’s it!

Cider Making

Cider Making

I highly recommend this little adventure if you’re ever in the South West.  However, allow plenty of time to enjoy yourselves properly – we originally only planned to pop in for half an hour, but soon realised that was impossible!

Wilkins Farmhouse Cider, Land’s End Farm, Mudgley, Wedmore, Somerset  Tel: 01934 712385

Open: Mon-Sat 10am-8pm, Sun: 10am-1pm

Posted under Places to Visit, Things to Do

This post was written by Lucy on September 3, 2008

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