The Little Victory Ball

Originally written for www.phoenixsomerset.org.uk January 2015.

As I reach the top of the stairs I’m greeted by a cheerful soul who introduces herself as Ethel. As she turns to ask if I am an old soldier, the light catches her face and I notice her yellow complexion, a sure sign that Ethel is a ‘canary’. Like the other girls at the munitions factory where she worked, ‘munitionette’ Ethel was slowly being poisoned by the TNT she was exposed to day in, day out.

Wall

As I stepped further inside the room I met a rather confused Dottie, whose husband Bill had returned from the war in body but not in mind, the strain showing on her face and in her faltering voice. Nearby, the tired and rather jaded music hall singer, Florrie, told tales of how the war had changed everything and how its end resulted in “the world going mad with relief.”

This was The Little Victory Ball.

The Little Victory Ball

The Little Victory Ball

The exhibition at Black Swan Arts in Frome combined a display of period artefacts including trench art, souvenirs and photographs, with live, interactive performances from the extremely talented cast. Including just one act from the full performance, the evening would have been absolutely superb if all the show did was give you a glimpse into the world of the women and families who so bravely kept their loved-ones’ memories alive. But, it does so much more than that.

The Little Victory Ball immerses you in the feelings and mixed emotions of the time – offering a sense of relief and inviting you to join the celebration whilst also filling you with a sense of the sadness endured by so many. It is powerful stuff, really putting the ‘story’ in the word ‘history’ and making you think about remembrance in a totally new light. The storytelling is made all the more powerful when you discover that all the words you hear during the performance are authentic – taken from genuine letters and records of the time.

The parlour

The parlour

From the thought-provoking artefacts on show, to the rousing sing-along to It’s a Long Way to Tipperary, The Little Victory Ball will leave you entertained, enlightened and thoroughly glad that you went along. Pay them a visit – you won’t be disappointed.

The Little Victory Ball is a travelling First World War museum and theatrical performance, available for events at almost any location including schools, street fairs and festivals. For more information visit www.thelittlevictoryball.com, call 07732 228022 or follow them on Twitter @dottyvictory.

Display of artefacts

Display of artefacts

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Home Front Vintage – Remade, Reloved, Retold

I don’t know about you but I’m always searching for gift ideas that are a little bit different – beautiful handcrafted objects, made in the UK, that are guaranteed to be greeted with a genuine: “That’s gorgeous; thank you so much!”

I was lucky enough to receive such a gift for my birthday earlier this year (after dropping a trail of not-so-subtle hints) and I absolutely love it. With Christmas just a month away, I thought I’d let you into this secret, in case you’re looking for a unique gift for someone who deserves something rather special.

HFV with bag

My present was a beautifully covered sketchbook from Home Front Vintage, who specialise in rescuing genuine silk ‘escape and evasion’ maps and giving them a new lease of life. Remaking the maps into “covetable gifts for people who value British heritage and provenance,” was the idea of HFV’s founder, ‘The Map Lady’, Sara Jane Murray whose range of gorgeous gifts can be found at www.homefrontvintage.co.uk.

Escape and evasion maps were the brainchild of eccentric WWII Army Officer, Clayton Hutton – as close to a real-life equivalent of James Bond’s Q as history can provide. Hutton was fascinated by magicians and escapologists and this led to his interest in ways of keeping stranded servicemen out of enemy hands. Escape and evasion maps were printed on silk to make them weather-proof, to allow them to be sewn into the lining of coats, or folded up in the heel of a shoe. Being silk, they could even keep their own secret – not rustling like their paper counterparts. The maps were used very successfully during WWII and the Cold War of the 1950s, before being confined to the forgotten store cupboards of regiments across the country.

Luckily for us, Sara Jane has scoured the UK, collecting the maps that now form the basis of her Home Front Vintage range.

The books are beautifully made and finished with a button and ribbon tie. They come gift boxed or gift wrapped as standard, using recycled cardboard gift boxes and Jane Means ribbon. With each one, you also receive a brief history of the maps themselves, making the opening of the package a real event. A great feature of this product is that the silk map cover is removable, allowing the notebook or sketchpad to be replaced when necessary, so there’s no need to be afraid to use it!

HFV all

I don’t often rave about products but I just absolutely love these. A beautifully made gift with a fantastic story – what more could you ask for?

I also love the fact that an object originally designed to get people out of a tight spot, might just do the same for you when it comes to finding the perfect gift. Take a look at www.homefrontvintage.co.uk.

Merry Christmas.

HFV letter

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Hollywood Comes To Town

Originally published in Arkadia magazine, November 2014.

NovDec Cover  pH Spread

With the Great British Bake Off inspiring a nation, a new book about to hit the shelves and a tour taking to the road, we thought it was about time we had a chat with Paul Hollywood to find out a little more about the world of TV’s baking star…

Paul and I can both remember growing up on shows like The Galloping Gourmet, which was extremely popular at the time, but these days cookery shows like GBBO enjoy cult status. But what is it about baking that has captured the public’s imagination? “I think it’s because it’s accessible,” says Paul. “Nine times out of ten, you’ll find that you already have the ingredients you need in the cupboard. If you want to zhoosh it up a bit, you might need to pop to the shops, but the basic ingredients are usually right there. It’s so cheap to bake too – the average cake will cost around 60-70p to make and it will serve eight people. You’d have trouble cooking a meal for that. I love reminding people just how easy it is to bake something and there’s also a great feeling of nostalgia attached to baking.”

British Baking Tour image

With the delay between the filming and screening of GBBO, I’ve often wondered if it’s like living in a permanent state of Déjà vu, especially when it comes to situations like ‘Bingate’, which became headline news after the episode was screened earlier this year. “The length of time between filming an episode and the time it is shown on TV is around 2½ months,” explains Paul. “It was a bit like Déjà vu to start off with, but after doing the show for five years, you get used to it and it becomes a way of life. I do sometimes have to think ‘Can I answer that yet?’ or ‘Oh, hold on, how do I answer that?’ when I get asked about particular incidents.

Talking of ‘Bingate’, I had to ask if Diana was really to blame for Ian’s Baked Alaska fail? “No,” Paul insisted, “Ian was way behind and it was never going to work anyway. There just wasn’t enough time for him to finish. There was no way that his ice cream being out of the freezer for such a short time made any difference!”

One of the attractions of GBBO is the on-screen relationship that exists between Paul and co-host Mary Berry, but are they still friends when the camera stops rolling? “Mary really is as lovely as she seems and we get on really well,” Paul reassured me. “You can’t act the way we work together on screen – we just genuinely get on that well. I really don’t know why the relationship works – but it does! We have a right laugh and always look after each other and if we stay behind after the show, we’ll always go out for a meal together afterwards.”

Speaking to Paul about his new book, Paul Hollywood’s British Baking, which is packed full of favourite recipes such as Cornish pasties and Bakewell tarts, I asked if we would ever run out of new things to try. “The interesting thing about that question is that there are no new recipes,” replied Paul. “If someone tells you they’ve invented a new recipe, don’t listen, it will just be a modern spin on an old recipe. In the book, I’m revisiting classic dishes – just putting new twists to them. The only area where we are seeing something new is flavour combinations. We all like to try new combinations and that is something that keeps these classics alive.”

Paul is returning to the stage with his hugely successful live show this autumn, having played to over 30,000 fans with his first tour, Get your Bake On. With dates across the country, the tour will bring Paul to Poole’s Lighthouse for an evening of baking, comedy and fun. “We’re going a bit more festive this time round with festive recipes and a bit more banter and more of a giggle! We’ll also be inviting people up on stage, setting them a challenge and getting the audience to judge their efforts.”

As ‘TV’s sexiest baker’, I wondered if Paul receives a rock star reception when he’s out and about on these live shows. Does he get knickers thrown on stage mid-bake? After the laughter subsides, Paul explains: “I was a bit shocked when we first started the tour. We’d go to leave via the stage door and there would be 80 people waiting for me. I wasn’t expecting that! The audience reaction is always really nice, we have a good laugh and people are always really generous with their comments about the show.”

So what is next for Mr Hollywood? Paul didn’t give the game away completely but he did say that he was working on a project with the BBC about another of his passions – a passion that would see him leave for the Isle of Man later that day. The Great British Bike Off? Watch this space…

For tickets to see Paul on his British Baking Live Tour go to http://www.paulhollywood.com and his book, Paul Hollywood’s British Baking, is published by Bloomsbury, £25.

Paul’s Soda Bread Recipe

Paull Hollywood 4

Ireland’s most famous bread is made with two of its oldest foods, wheat and buttermilk. The acid in the buttermilk reacts with the bicarbonate of soda and creates the rise. If you have kids, do teach them how to make soda bread, because it’s great to be able to put a loaf on the table within 45 minutes. Once you’ve mastered it, try adding some grated Wexford cheese (vintage Irish Cheddar) and chopped raw onion to the dough.

Makes 1 small loaf

250g plain white flour

250g plain wholemeal flour

1 tsp salt

1 tsp bicarbonate of soda

About 400ml buttermilk

  1. Heat the oven to 200°C/Gas 6. Line a baking tray with baking parchment.
  2. Put the flours, salt and bicarbonate of soda into a large bowl and mix well. Make a well in the centre and pour in half the buttermilk. Using your fingers or a round-bladed knife, draw the flour into the buttermilk. Continue to add the buttermilk until all the flour has been absorbed and you have a sticky dough. You may not need all the buttermilk – it depends on the flour you use.
  3. Tip the dough out on to a lightly floured surface, shape it into a ball and flatten it slightly with the palm of your hand. It is important to work quickly, as once the buttermilk is added it begins to react with the bicarbonate of soda.
  4. Put the dough on the baking tray. Mark into quarters with a large, sharp knife, cutting deeply through the loaf, almost but not quite through to the base. Dust the top with flour.
  5. Bake for 30 minutes or until the loaf is golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped on the base. Leave to cool on a wire rack. Eat on the day of baking – or toast it the next day.
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Loafing Around – The Olives Et Al Story

Originally published in Arkadia magazine, September 2014.

Sept oct cover OEA spread

The Olives Et Al story is 21 years old this year, dating back to a time when Captain Henschel became, simply, Giles again and set off in search of adventure, with his wife-to-be Annie, on ‘his and hers’ motorbikes. They planned to ride around the Mediterranean and North Africa and did just that for 12 months, before returning home to a Southampton bedsit where they found themselves with nothing but a diary of their travels, a book full of recipes collected along the way and their heads full of enough wonderful memories to last them a lifetime.

...enough wonderful memories to last them a lifetime.

…enough wonderful memories to last them a lifetime.

Those memories soon drove them to recreate the recipes they had brought home with them and, before long, Giles and Annie found themselves behind a stand at the Rural Living Show, selling jars of olives inspired by their Mediterranean travels. The date was 28 October 1993 and that fledgling business was what we now know as Olives Et Al.

Being the first company to bring olives to the provinces, suddenly Olives Et Al was leading the artisan, speciality food movement, heavily influencing the popularity of not just olives but Mediterranean food in general. They had become ambassadors for the humble olive, making it accessible, beyond the boundaries of London, to discerning consumers countrywide and the numerous shows attended around the country acted as their pop-up shops, allowing them to spread the word about Mediterranean food and Olives Et Al, which soon became synonymous with one another.

Since those early days, Olives Et Al has continued to grow, year on year, but with business values built around the hospitality and warmth that Giles and Annie experienced on their trips abroad, the business retains a local feel and a sense of pride that insists on artisan food with a delicate touch – there are no over-engineered offerings here, in fact, OEA’s top sellers today, their ‘Sunshine’, ‘Moorish’ and ‘Classic’ olives, are the same as they were back in 1993. Another vital part of Olives Et Al’s identity is its dry humour. You’ll find examples everywhere, from its witty advertising, to the branding of offspring products, such as Captain Tiptoes Badger Sauce, which contains no badger but does contain references to both Giles’ and Annie’s former careers.

They had become ambassadors for the humble olive...

They had become ambassadors for the humble olive…

Giles’ main focus and drive has always been looking after the business and taking it to the next level, and you can tell that he still craves adventure by the way the business is re-invented every seven years. Olives Et Al’s 21st year is no exception and has already seen the launch of Loaf & Larder, OEA’s gorgeous new deli, at Cheddar Garden Centre. Loaf & Larder offers the finest locally sourced produce, ready for you to take away and combine to make the perfect meal. Perusing the shelves is like looking at the menu of a restaurant that has no tables – a concept that is proving to be extremely popular with customers at Cheddar and, with a Loaf & Larder planned for Aylesbury and another in the pipeline, a concept that, like Olives Et Al itself, is set to become more than just a local phenomenon.

With his enthusiasm running as high now as it was 21 years ago, who knows where Giles will lead Olives Et Al in the seven years to come. The natural progression would be for Loaf & Larder to take on the High Street, as an artisan restaurant, tempting passers-by with the irresistible flavours of the Mediterranean. Watch this space – it is amazing how far you can travel, given another seven years!

...the same bikes are taxed and insured and ready to go - this journey isn't over yet!

…the same bikes are taxed and insured and ready to go – this journey isn’t over yet!

The journey that Giles and Annie embarked upon 21 years ago was never going to be just about the bike ride – the whole 21 years has been a journey. And if you’re wondering what happened to those motorbikes that were so important to the start of this story – the same bikes are taxed and insured and ready to go – this journey isn’t over yet!

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The Spirit of Shaftesbury

Originally published in Arkadia magazine, September 2014.

Sept oct cover Shaftesbury spread

With a rich past dating back beyond the time of the Saxons, who used its elevated position to great advantage, it is no wonder that Shaftesbury is steeped in so much history.

Well known for Gold Hill, stunning views over the Blackmore Vale and the site of the long lost Abbey, Shaftesbury’s streets are full of ancient buildings, oozing charm, character and holding more than their fair share of secrets. As you wander through the town, it is easy to let your imagination transport you to the Shaftesbury of times past, to Thomas Hardy’s ‘Shaston’, with bustling streets and traders from neighbouring towns and villages assembling at the local market.

Gold Hill.

Gold Hill

The historic Grosvenor Arms boasts a beautiful façade with fine pillars and sash windows. This hides its true past from modern eyes as there has been an inn here since medieval times. Originally a timber-framed building, The Red Lion, as it was then, would have been a busy local landmark when it was purchased by the Grosvenor family and given their name in 1820.

Another coaching inn once stood on the site now called Swans Yard. After a variety of less glamorous uses, the site was re-developed in 1999 to offer a mix of homes and retail units. The result is a unique development, which offers a convenient link between Bell Street and Shaftesbury’s High Street. Despite consisting of modern buildings, this area still has great character due to the sympathetic use of local materials and the artisan nature of its shops, which include the aptly named Around the Corner and The Cygnet Gallery. This artisan presence has earned Swans Yard its reputation as the ‘Creative Heart of Shaftesbury’.

Park Lane.

Park Lane

In common with other historic towns, many of Shaftesbury’s buildings hint at their past through layers of subsequent alterations and it is this that gives it so much charm, offering a surprise around every corner, often accompanied by a breath-taking view. Shaftesbury has some beautiful shop fronts too, such as Bright Blooms, on the corner of Bell Street and Parsons Pool – so evocative of the golden age of retail, when the window display was everything.

Bright Blooms.

Bright Blooms

With the bony hand of Halloween preparing to knock, in the not-too-distant future, I can’t ignore some of Shaftesbury’s ‘darker’ characters. It is rumoured that a lone monk can sometimes be seen on Abbey Walk, beckoning passers-by to follow him into the gardens where the Abbey once stood. According to local legend, the monk was entrusted with the Abbey’s wealth, when Abbess Souche feared the worst from King Henry VIII’s commissioners. The monk buried the treasure but died before he could get word of its hiding place to Abbess Souche. It is thought that, to this day, he is still trying to let someone know where the treasure is located. A few have claimed to have followed the monk, who has also been spotted in a local cellar, but on each occasion the hooded figure has disappeared into thin air without divulging his secret. The Abbey was also the burial place of King Canute’s heart, which some say accounts for some of the more unusual happenings in the area.

Shaftesbury High Street.

Many of Shaftesbury’s buildings hint at their past through layers of subsequent alterations

Other local sightings have included a woman known as the ‘Grey Lady’, thought to be the ghost of a 16th century nun, and a mischievous child. If you stay in Shaftesbury and you wake to find your bedclothes on the floor, it is said that this precocious child may be to blame!

Shaftesbury is a popular destination, attracting many thousands of visitors each year. I like to think that one of the reasons for its popularity is that the town has many faces – even if some can only be seen out of the corner of your eye! Whether your favourite haunts in Shaftesbury are of the retail, natural or supernatural variety, be sure to pay this fascinating town another visit soon.

From the hilltop.

From the hilltop

Images by Graham Rains, except ‘Bright Blooms’ by Robin Savill.

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A Haunting in Dorchester

Originally published in Arkadia magazine, September 2014.

Sept oct cover haunting

The sign said ‘Dorchester Ghost Walk, no need to book, meet at the King’s Arms at 8pm.’ We decided to turn up and see what it was all about. After all, what’s the worst that could happen?

So, along with a record crowd of around 30 other shriek-seekers, we paid our money at The King’s Arms on Dorchester’s High East Street and followed our guide into the evening air to discover what ghoulish tales and fiendish characters the town had in store for us.

The caped figure, dressed in black, with cane and topper, introduced himself as Alistair Chisholm, who as well as being a well-respected tour guide and historian, is also Dorchester’s Town Crier, a post he has held since 1997.

The man in black - Alistair Chisholm.

The man in black – Alistair Chisholm.

Alistair, who has been leading ghost walks in the town for over 10 years, started by delivering a sombre warning: “What you have paid for is a one way ticket – there are no return tickets to where we are going.” We looked at each other and smiled, nervously. He went on to say that we would finish up in the graveyard – as if to remind us of our mortality, as well as providing useful information about the walk ahead.

After a pause to discover where the members of the group had come from (Birmingham to Bovington, on this particular night), it was soon time for our first stop at the old Dorchester Gaol. We were told about the dark history of the prison, built on the site of a Norman castle, before heading down Friary Hill. As the name suggests, this was once the site of a Franciscan Friary and home to the main character of the tale that was about to unfold.

Gaol

Dorchester Prison.

Legend has it that, around 20 years ago, a mysterious hooded figure, thought to be the ghost of a monk, was seen in Frome Terrace, at the bottom of Friary Hill. Some 10 years later, the figure was seen again, head down, hurrying along the verge. Then, just one year ago, another sighting was reported nearby, where a tree possesses a peculiar white variegation. It is said that each time the monk walks past, the colour drains from the leaves, turning them ghostly white!

We leave Frome Terrace behind us and, as our guide explains that this is the only ghost walk that actually takes you to the other side, we cross the bridge over the Frome!

In days gone by, from the far river bank, locals would look up to the prison to watch the many hangings that took place. This method of execution was known as being ‘stabbed with the Bridport dagger’ – a reference to the fact that the ropes used for the hangings were a product of Bridport’s thriving rope-making industry. In 1856, a 16-year old Thomas Hardy stood in the rain and watched the hanging of Martha Brown (the last public hanging of a woman in Dorset) from this very spot – a sight that would haunt him for the rest of his life.

Passing Hangman's Cottage.

Passing Hangman’s Cottage.

At Hangman’s Cottage, nearby, our guide shared more of the inspiration for Hardy’s The Withered Arm, in which the only cure for the affliction was to touch the arm against the neck of a freshly hanged person. Gruesome stuff!

Stopping for a while at the Roman Town House in Colliton Park, we learned about Dorchester’s past as Durnovaria, as it was known to the Romans. At this point, the light was fading fast and as we headed for Colliton House, it became apparent that, in common with many of Dorchester’s illuminated buildings, the house takes on a whole new identity after dark when the warm honey coloured stone glows like burnished gold.

...honey coloured stone glows like burnished gold.

…honey coloured stone glows like burnished gold.

We worked our way through Dorchester’s lesser-known side streets, arriving back at High East Street to be greeted by more buildings of gold set against the deep blue sky. We listened to the story of Judge Jeffreys and the Bloody Assizes, and heard the tale of William Barnes’ statue outside St Peter’s Church, which is said to move, ever closer to the edge of the plinth. It used to be said that when the statue fell, ‘Galpin’s folly’ (the clock tower on the nearby Corn Exchange) would also tumble!

William Barnes moving ever closer to the edge...

William Barnes moving ever closer to the edge…

After another tale featuring Reverend Templeman, who remained a regular visitor to St Peter’s long after his death, our journey took us to the graveyard. In the pitch blackness, our guide wrapped up our fascinating evening and sent us on our way with one more eerie tale and a demonic laugh for good measure. And, as the clock struck ten, we were given one final reminder that the pubs were still open, in case we craved the company of one more spirit before bed time!

Church

St Peter’s Church.

The Dorchester Ghost Walks take place on Thursdays at 8pm, meeting at The King’s Arms on High East Street. There is no need to book. Adults £6, children £3. For more information call Alistair Chisholm on 07773 286197.

Words and images: Robin Savill

 

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By Hook or by Crook

Originally published in Arkadia magazine, July 2014.

Cover-2 Shep2

In a beautifully remote spot, at the end of a long lane that hints at the adventure to come, lies Downhouse Farm, at Higher Eype, near Bridport. Visiting recently, I immediately fell in love with the farm’s unspoilt surroundings, its old stone barns and its rustic charm.

Nearby, a lovingly restored shepherd’s hut sits at the top of a field that slopes gently towards the coast, enjoying stunning views out to sea and across to the village of Eype and beyond. This was to be home for the night and I must confess that, having always had a thing about shepherd’s huts, I was more than just a little excited!

The hut at Downhouse Farm.

The hut at Downhouse Farm.

The original plan had been a romantic night away, but a last-minute cancellation from the babysitter put pay to that idea and a ‘Plan B’ was required. I thought of making the most of the peace and tranquillity to catch up on some writing, on my own, but hearing my youngest daughter’s voice in the background made me think again. Georgia not only shares my sense of adventure but is usually at the back of the queue when it comes to spending quality time with Dad, so… countryside adventure, here we come!

The view from the hut is just spectacular.

The view from the hut is just spectacular.

Upon arrival, on a glorious June evening, we were greeted by Nikki and her future son-in-law, Craig, who provided all the information we needed about the hut, the farm and the surrounding area. Nikki and husband Dean have been farming here, on 350 acres of the National Trust’s Golden Cap Estate, since 1991. They run a large herd of Aberdeen Angus cattle, a flock of Welsh, badger-faced Tordhu sheep and a small herd of pigs, as well as running their award-winning Garden Café and hiring out the shepherd’s hut.

The hut is beautifully decorated.

The hut is beautifully decorated.

The hut is beautifully decorated, its tongue and groove interior washed in a lovely shade of cream, with soft furnishings in blue Toile de Jouy, adding to the shabby chic feel. Despite its size (approximately 6’ × 12’) it feels remarkably spacious and offers plenty of room for two. A stable door opens into the living area where a pine table (complete with vase of freshly picked flowers), provides space for dining, or playing the board games that are thoughtfully stowed in the drawer. There’s also a chest of drawers containing other essentials, such as a picnic blanket and a supply of tea lights. The bed runs across the far end and is curtained off from the rest of the hut, giving it a cosy, nest-like feel. It looked so inviting, but there was still some exploring to do!

What more could you ask for?

What more could you ask for?

After we’d met the pigs and a gorgeous lamb, simply called Lamb, we decided it was time to venture to the pub. The quickest route to Eype’s New Inn is across the fields and, following Craig’s instructions, we arrived 15 minutes later, to a very friendly welcome. From the blackboard, Georgia and I both chose the freshly caught haddock and took our drinks out to the terrace, to enjoy the view across to the farm and our shepherd’s hut! The fish were huge, wrapped in the most delicious batter I’ve ever tasted and nestled on a bed of freshly cooked chips. Despite the epic proportions, we both cleared our plates and, after Georgia had also polished off a bowl of ice cream, we headed home to the hut.

A lamb called Lamb.

A lamb called Lamb.

It was soon time to turn in and I must admit that, in such rustic surroundings, I was surprised by how comfortable the bed was. So comfortable, in fact, that we both slept like babies.

In the morning, we woke to the sound of birds and playful piglets and set off for an early morning walk, spotting a fox and lots of rabbits, before returning to the farm with a camera full of photos and a hearty appetite!

Good morning Georgia!

Good morning Georgia!

After a quick shower, we headed for the Garden Café for a full farmhouse breakfast. As we tucked in, we realised why the café had been awarded the prestigious title of Best Café in Dorset; the food is out of this world!

After breakfast, Craig showed us the newborn piglets and two-week old calves – adorable! Sadly, it was time to leave, but what a time we’d had. The shepherd’s hut is beautiful and Nikki and her family had looked after us like we were family too, making the whole experience so relaxed and, well, just perfect really!

The most perfect location.

The most perfect location.

Whether you’re looking for a romantic getaway, peaceful retreat or just some quality time with someone who deserves to see a little more of you, treat yourself to a stay in the Downhouse shepherd’s hut. For more information visit http://www.downhousefarm.org or call 01308 421232.

A one-night stay, for two people, is just £85 during high season including a full farmhouse breakfast.

Goodnight.

Just beautiful.

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