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Foodie (and other) things to try in Shropshire

It was our first visit to Shropshire – and it won’t be the last!
We were based on a tiny caravan site near Craven Arms, a rather unprepossessing little town between Shrewsbury and Ludlow. However, don’t let looks put you off! For starters, there’s Walls, a rare breed accredited butchers, with a mouth-watering array of sausages, rare breed bacon, pies...well enough to keep us in wonderful meats for our holiday.
At another butchers in the town, we tried Hereford beef burgers and the best rump steak I think I’ve ever had! Then there was the supermarket; not a ‘usual’ one, but a bit of an Aladdin’s cave with things you need to buy and things you didn’t realise you wanted!
Then, on the way to Ludlow, there was the Ludlow food hall... where we spent a fortune and I can recommend the Bromfield Priory Cheese and their sourdough bread. You can view their produce being made in the various sections, though large glass windows
Ludlow itself is full of interesting shops and a twice monthly farmers’ market of local produce.
I was lucky enough to have a master class at La Becasse, a Michelin starred restaurant. That was followed by lunch. It was stupendous!
We also visited a little food festival near Knighton – Brampton Bryan. There we met ‘Muddy Boots’ who were featured on TV a few weeks ago, trying to break into the High Street supermarkets. We purchased some of their burgers, too – and very good they were!
We actually were brave enough to drive over the top of the Long Mynd into Church Sretton. We drove through the clouds and maybe I am quite grateful I didn’t see some of the sheer drops alongside the steep and narrow road! Church Stretton, too, has its fair share of foodie haunts and we stopped in a little deli to stock up on yet more local produce.
Other beautiful places to visit include Much Wenlock,  Stokesay castle,  Clun and, further afield, Leominster. We headed deep down country lanes to unspoilt valleys and forests – we don’t have Sat Nav, preferring to rely on a trusty map and good navigating skills! For a good way to spend a rainy afternoon, there’s ‘The Land of Lost Content’ in Craven Arms, which will transport you down memory lane!
We wanted to visit Acton Scott, the ‘Victorian Farm’, but had left it till last. Of course, the weather ‘turned’ and, with the forecast of heavy rain and gales, we broke camp and headed home a day early.
Shropshire is very pretty, without the crowds of the Cotswolds. I really recommend it and can’t wait until we revisit! We have been promised loads of crab apples and wild pears by the site owners in return for cider! We’ll be back in the Autumn and this time, we'll get to Acton Scott!!

Thanks for sharing Ann, sounds like you had a great visit  

Have a look at this thread Sloe Gin

It sounds as though it would be right up your street.

Thank you! We'd love to meet up, but I have a little pickle and chutney business and think I have either a farmers' market or food fair on that weekend. I'll be doing Mold and Conwy food festivals, if anyone is meeting up for those.

We went to Conwy last year and have pencilled it in again.

Sloe Gin- so you have experienced Tuffins- do you have any moments that you do not recall anything whilst being in there? They normally drug and insert a chip so you have this urge to return!!!!

You where lucky to escape Shropshire- normally we capture outsiders to put in the breeding program- we need the extra genes

chickenstu wrote:
They normally drug and insert a chip so you have this urge to return!!!!  

Hum, yes, I do think we had that done to us! In fact, I also think I had a walletectomy, as they evacuated the contents of my purse far too easily!

old ploughman

Sshhh! Dont tell everyone. Its nice and quiet here - dont need too many more. Craven Arms is my hometown and I still farm on its outskirts (I expect it will swallow us up in a few years time). You are right, its a lovely place and with a lot going on around us - we have become something of a tourism hotspot over the last 6 or 7 years.

Go on - tell us who the campsite was - or at least give me a clue - Engine and Tender?  I hope you wont mind. I am going to print off your original post and send it to our local community newspaper, The 49'er so that some of those who can only moan about their surroundings can hear just how lucky we are.

Old ploughman

Wayside perhaps Old Plough Man???

You never know we might know each other

old ploughman wrote:

Go on - tell us who the campsite was - or at least give me a clue - Engine and Tender?  I hope you wont mind. I am going to print off your original post and send it to our local community newspaper, The 49'er so that some of those who can only moan about their surroundings can hear just how lucky we are.

Old ploughman

Hi Old ploughman (sure you're not that old   ) It was the C &CC club site about 2 miles east of Craven arms. Feel free to use what I've written - just let me know if it's published, please!
old ploughman

ah! the one at the bottom of the tarmac drive up to the chicken farm? About half a mile from my dads farm  
Now, if you want scenery, next time take a drive West of Craven Arms up through Clun and on to Newcastle (10 miles). The views from any of the hills above Newcastle are spectacular - have often been compelled to stop the tractor on a busy day, and just marvel at the views from on the tops.

We did get to Clun, but next time, I think we'll concentrate more on the west side of Craven Arms. It was all 'take your breath away' country. We both fell in love with the countryside (though Wales is, of course, our home, but it's good to go somewhere for a change!). As we don't like crowds, it appealed to our sense of 'land of lost content'.


Just read the posts

We used to go and visit friend/customer just outside Clun with a v. posh B & B, he was a very nice German fella who was mad about his unusual conifers and plants. Trouble was, he'd got badgers,   need I say more?

We lost a good customer, but he's still a friend, trouble is, his coffee's like sludge!!

If you go again-walk up bury ditches- one of the best views of south shropshire there is

Shropshire’s so gorgeous; just up the road from me. Acton Scott working farm museum is well work a visit, and they are planning a campsite there too. Leominster is my local town, and although I like it I don’t think it’s as touristy as Ludlow [doesn’t have the array of gift shops for example]. But worth a visit as it has a nice feel in my opinion.

We love Herefordshire and Shropshire and get down there pretty regularly. When the kids were young, we camped at Leysters for two years on the trot. We have happy memories of the area.
Acton Scott was a well kept secret. We've been visiting there for well over twenty years. I'm almost disappointed that its gotten so much publicity but if it guarentees its survival, then its worth it.
The other place that we used to take the kids to, was Shugborough Hall near Stafford but the farm museum there, isn't a patch on what it used to be.  They've sold out IMO.

If anyone fancies a break in Shropshire, this is my mates new holiday let just outside Craven Arms- a good location to see all of what the county has to offer. The flat has recently been finished and has everything you need.

If you do book tell them chickenstu gave you the link- he might buy me a drink
old ploughman

10 out of 10, I see they have listed our little farm diversification on his list of local attractions  

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