Monday, 21 December 2009

Deddington Christmas Farmer's Market

Deddington, lies to the east of the Cotswolds and is an old coaching town, although only the size of a large village by modern standards. The golden ironstone buildings have a solidity that makes them neither quaint or especially pretty, unlike our limestone ones. However, they do have real charm and character. And most important of all, they hold a regular farmer's market, reputed to be one of the best in England.

In this week of climate change summits in Copenhagen, there is something rather special in buying produce that is grown locally. The beef for sale from this farm in Duns Tew has travelled less than five miles from village to market. Not only that, but it looks so much nicer than the racks of clinically presented supermarket meat. Why eat meat from, say, Argentina, when you can look at the cattle grazing in fields nearby?
Crowds throng the produce stalls - the queue for bread so long that neither the purchase of some home baking or a photograph was possible. A gap at the cheese stall meant that tastings and subsequent purchases were more easily made. And despite the pushing and jostling, being Christmas, the mood was relaxed and vibrant for a market is a place to meet and chat with old friends as well as make purchases.

The church, which dates from the 13th century, dominates the market place and is itself busy selling cups of tea and homemade cakes. But when the hustle and bustle gets all too much there are quiet alleyways that you can slip into, away from the crowds. One day, I shall have to return and explore Deddington further, for it is a fascinating place.

Star shaped almond biscuits from the ladies in the church, buffalo cheese from Somerset, beef from Duns Tew and eggs from another nearby farm made our purchases of the day. The bowl of satsumas were also locally produced - grown in a client's orangery which we created earlier this year. The holidays are going to be a great time of good and local feasting....


Postscript: I am ashamed to say I ate all of the biscuits already, they were so delicious. I knew it was a mistake to try one.


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8 comments:

  1. YES! I buy beef, pork, dairy and produce locally here in my town in North Carolina. It is a bit pricey, but the difference is more than noticeable than supermarket stuff. Great Post!

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  2. Johnson, I love a good Farmers Market. And always your picture post are top notch. But the last ones Old Masters Stilllife quality is out standing. Wishing a great Holiday Season. - G

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  3. What a wonderful place to visit. The beef I buy states that it is from New Zealand. I definitely need to get to our local farmer's market and buy some local beef and produce. I hope you have a wonderful Christmas!

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  4. Fantastic! It's just beautiful. It just looks so cold there to be marketing.

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  5. It looks like something straight out of a Dickens Christmas story! After such hard work in the garden and shopping, tea and a biscuit sounds like a great treat!

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  6. Thanks for all your comments. It was a cold day at the market - I didn't envy the stallholders standing there for hours.

    Noelle - I find it hard to imagine Arizona importing New Zealand meat. I must have been watching too many old American movies but I see vast herds of cattle crossing the state - perhaps they've all been rustled!

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  7. Ohhh... I love your photos and will have to come back and take a closer look. I so enjoy seeing how life is in other lands and towns. I must run now and make a Christmas dinner for company. I also enjoyed the photos of your horses and the area around your house. I shall return...

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  8. Hola, me gusta tu blog es muy agradable.
    Saludos desde España

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