Category Archives: Our travels in England

Wynyard Hall, Farmers Market

On a overcast Sunday in the middle of March, we decided to pay a visit to the Farmers Market at Wynyard Hall, (Wynyard, Stockton-on-Tees, Billingham TS22 5NF).
It was the first market of the season, and the first that we had ever visited at Wynyard Hall.
Wynyard Hall, Northern Dales Farmers Markets
Being early birds we turned up at 9am, which was the time the market was due to open.
Most of the stalls holders were ready for business, with just a few who were yet to finish displaying their products, so we had a little wander in the grounds of Wynyard Hall to kill some time before all of the goods were ready to be sold.
Wynyard Hall, Northern Dales Farmers Markets
Wynyard Hall, Northern Dales Farmers Markets
Once the farmers market was fully up and running, we started buying anything and everything that took our fancy, like a couple of food starved zombies.
Well, maybe not zombies, but the food dispossessed. It has been a long Winter.
The first items to go into our shopping bag was a couple of loaves of bread, from The Moody Baker http://www.themoodybaker.co.uk
Once one has purchased bread, what could be more important than beer?
Wynyard Hall, Northern Dales Farmers Markets
The answers to the above question is lots of beer.
Wynyard Hall, Northern Dales Farmers Markets
Next into the shopping bag was 7 bottles of beer, from Three Brothers Brewing Co http://threebrothersbrewing.co.uk Unit 4
Clayton Court
Bowesfield Crescent
Stockton-On-Tees
TS18 3QX
Tel: 01642 678084 )
Seven bottles of beer loaded into our shopping bag (3 Short and Stout, 2 Brew No.1, and 2 Malt-Teaser) we moved on to peruse the next stall.
Wynyard Hall, Northern Dales Farmers Markets
With Mothers Day just around the corner, I thought I’d better get something for the old gal.
What do you buy your 80 year old mother. Well, I thought I could not go wrong with some soap from TOC Aromatherapy http://www.tocaromatherapy.co.uk and some biscuits from The Sawley Kitchen http://www.sawleykitchen.co.uk
Laura did not want to be left out of this gift buying extravaganza, so she picked up a small, and reassuringly expensive (£6.50) bag of Luxury Bolivian Dark Chocolate Truffles from the Itzamna’s Cocoa.  http://www.itzamnascocoa.co.uk
Wynyard Hall, Northern Dales Farmers Markets
You cannot have a successful day shopping unless it involves purchasing some meat, and what better meat than pork.
These sausages and black puddling are from Wrefords Farm (Fleming Field Farm, Shotton Colliery, Durham DH6 2JD) which is only a few miles from our house. Now that is what I call eating local.
Wynyard Hall, Northern Dales Farmers Markets
Wynyard Hall, Northern Dales Farmers Markets
Nothing goes better with sausages and black pudding than some nice fresh eggs. We picked up 6 duck eggs, and a couple of goose eggs, from The Clucking Pig http://www.thecluckingpig.com
Wynyard Hall, Northern Dales Farmers Markets
Wynyard Hall, Northern Dales Farmers Markets
Also into our shopping bag went some cheese. A Teesdale Curd from Teesdale Cheesemakers http://www.teesdalecheesemakers.co.uk and a blue style cheese and a goats cheese from Laceys Cheese https://laceyscheese.co.uk
Wynyard Hall, Northern Dales Farmers Markets
Just when we thought the day could get no better we were handed a free bag from Northern Dales Farmers’ Market http://www.northerndalesfarmersmarkets.com/ the folks who runs lots of farmers markets up here in the North East England.
Blog post by Richard Randall

Whitby – Fish ‘n’ Chips and Daytrippers

On a sunny August Monday morning Laura and I motored down to Whitby in North Yorkshire. It was our first day trip out in many moons and
Whitby, North Yorkshire
Whitby, North Yorkshire
One of the reasons for the trip was to sample the famous Whitby Fish ‘n’ Chips and what better place to try it than at the Quayside Fish and Chip Shop.
Whitby, North Yorkshire
It won the national award for best fish and chip shop of the year in 2015.
Whitby, North Yorkshire
We had arrived early in Whitby so it was almost a Fish and Chip brunch that we ordered. Eating Fish and Chips at 11.30am was rather odd, but having spent some time in South East Asia it was not the earliest strange meal of the day, that we have ever had.
Whitby, North YorkshireWe enjoyed our Cod and Chips just across the road from Quayside. Sitting on a concrete bollard type thing. Proper British holiday style of alfreco dinning.
I’m always dubious about ‘Award Winning’ but I can say hand on heart that it was great. Really ferm well cooked fish in the best batter I’ve ever had that was not homemade.
Quayside Whitby
7 Pier Road
Whitby
North Yorkshire
YO21 3PU
Tel. 01947 825346
http://www.quaysidewhitby.co.uk
Whitby, North Yorkshire
Whitby, North Yorkshire
Whitby, North Yorkshire
Whitby, North Yorkshire
Whitby, North Yorkshire
Whitby, North Yorkshire
Whitby, North Yorkshire
Whitby, North Yorkshire
Whitby, North Yorkshire
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A trip to the seaside would not be complete without buying some rock to take back home for friends and family.
Whitby, North Yorkshire
Whitby, North Yorkshire
Whitby, North Yorkshire
Whitby, North Yorkshire
Whitby, North Yorkshire
Whitby, North Yorkshire
Blog post by Richard Randall

Vintage Fair at Plants R Ross, Easington, County Durham

On Sunday we decided to head just up the road to the Vintage Fair being held at Plants R Ross Garden Centre.
But before I write about the fun of the fair, first the weather, well, I’m British – it’s a top topic. It was a bit hit and miss, whether we would go or not. The skies were very grey all morning, and there were a few spots of rain about an hour before we had planned to leave from home in Easington Colliery.
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The sky was still a steely grey when Laura, Barley the Lurcher and I bundled into the car, but it was at least dry. A few minutes later we arrived at Plants R Ross, handed over a £1 each (Barley was excluded from the entrance fee because he is under 16 years of age) and we parked up.
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Given the weather, it was a nice surprise how many over folk had risked a possible drenching. Even more people arrived during the 90 minutes we spent there. In fact it was positively crowded when we departed for Easington Colliery and lunch.
Vintage Fair at Plants R Ross, County Durham
Vintage Fair at Plants R Ross, County Durham
Vintage Fair at Plants R Ross, County DurhamAt Midday ‘the beefy la slap trio’, a Rockabilly trio, burst into life and knocked out some good tunes. Barley the Lurcher enjoyed the music greatly, and so did we. That’s not sarcasm, or an attempt at humour, Barley really like live music.
Vintage Fair at Plants R Ross, County Durham
Lickety Split had there ice-cream van at the Vintage Fair. Normally we spot the van parked outside their shop in Seaham. They seemed to be doing a good trade, even though the weather was far from perfect ice-cream weather.
Laura said she was trying to make herself fancy an ice-cream, but it wasn’t working, she just wasn’t in the mood, which was a shame because Lickety Split ice-cream is very good.
Vintage Fair at Plants R Ross, County Durham
So, not being in the mood for an ice-cream, we opted instead for a beer.
A bottle of APA from Allendale Brew Company, for £3. A nice hoppy beer, it’s just a shame it was served a tad warm. Still we did managed to drink it to the bottom of the bottle. Waste not, want not. 😀
Vintage Fair at Plants R Ross, County Durham

The market stalls were selling a variety of goods; vinyl, 1950’s/retro products, such as clothes, handbags, jewellery, artwork, and there was a pop-up barbers for your ‘short back ‘n sides’ and a professional hair stylist giving make-overs for hair and make-up in the rocker-billy, 1950’s style.

We enjoyed wandering round looking at the stalls, but not being in a retail therapy mood for what was for sale on the market stalls, we had a gander at the classic cars that were on show. If the sun had been shining, the cars would have looked even better.

There were lots of people wearing traditional rocker-billy fashions, and I felt comfortable in my dark wash jeans, and black leather jacket, but Laura said she wished she hadn’t have worn her anorak. 😉
We’re glad we went along, and it’s something to consider for next year – but it is a long way to come back from Monaco.

Below, a couple of Willys Jeeps. Armed and ready for action.
Vintage Fair at Plants R Ross, County Durham
Vintage Fair at Plants R Ross, County Durham
Vintage Fair at Plants R Ross, County Durham
Vintage Fair at Plants R Ross, County Durham

A few American Classic Cars.
Vintage Fair at Plants R Ross, County Durham
Vintage Fair at Plants R Ross, County Durham
Vintage Fair at Plants R Ross, County Durham
Vintage Fair at Plants R Ross, County Durham
Vintage Fair at Plants R Ross, County Durham
Vintage Fair at Plants R Ross, County Durham
Vintage Fair at Plants R Ross, County Durham
Vintage Fair at Plants R Ross, County Durham
A British Alvis.
Vintage Fair at Plants R Ross, County Durham

Northallerton – Farmers Market, and High Street Shopping

Last Wednesday, Laura and I decided to go to the Northallerton Farmers Market, which is held on the 4th Wednesday of every month.
Northallerton is about a 45 minute drive (depending on the whim of our SatNav) from where we live in Easington Colliery.
We arrived in Northallerton at about 9.30am.
The high street was busy with market traders, shoppers, and cars. I drove along one side of the high street looking for a parking spot, missed one, then drove back along the road in the opposite direction, missed another spot, and then third time lucky, found a spot and parked. Laura chucked some coins in the pay and display machine, and off we all went for a mooch about.
I say all, because we took Barley, our Lurcher with us. No doubt he thought we were going to the beach as that’s where car journeys usually end, but he was very happy being somewhere busy, well, much busier than where we live, and he received a lot of attention from people stopping to chat to us about him, and to stroke him. He seemed to be of great interest to the people of Northallerton, no doubt due to his good looks.
The brown plaque to the left of the door says - 'The Fleece Inn. The oldest pub in Northallerton, where Charles Dickens is said to have wrote Nicholas Nickleby.' ????#pub #building #architecture #Northallerton #Hambleton #NorthYorkshire #England
So, enough about the dog, more about Northallerton. We had a good wander, looking at the town, popping into the church yard, and then sightseeing over, we began the main event, we started on the food shopping – the reason we’d gone to Northallerton.
Our first purchase was 4 Lobster and Crab burgers (£7) and some Rollmops from the Carricks Fish van.
Fish. Market. Northallerton. #fish #food #market #Northallerton #Hambleton #NorthYorkshire #England
I cooked the Lobster and Crab burgers for our lunch the next day, and they were might tasty. They had a lovely strong fish flavour, we could really taste the lobster and crab; they weren’t full of fillers, and the texture was really good. Impressed.
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We continued strolling along the high street, browsing the market stalls and the shops.
Our next purchase of the day was some Yorkshire Forced Rhubarb. Laura said she’d make rhubarb crumble, it’s a favourite of mine, but I’m still waiting……. I could make it myself, but sweets are not part of my kitchen duties. Hahaha!
I also picked up half a dozen eggs. Not really sure why, because we had about a dozen at home in the fridge, but when I get into food shopping mode, nothing can stop me!
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National Espresso. ?????? Like London. But not. ???? #doubledeckerbus #redbus #coffee #cafe #market #Northallerton #Hambleton #NorthYorkshire #England
We were pleasantly surprised by Northallerton, it was really nice to be somewhere that felt alive, unlike so much of Britain with its boarded-up shops and dying high streets.
Northallerton is a thriving market town, with a decent number of good food shops, and we spotted at least two butcher shops that stocked a wide range of fresh and cooked goods, as well as several small independent shops, which gives it character; it’s not all big chain shops; betting shops and take-aways, that you see elsewhere. There were lots of pubs too, but unfortunately Barley can’t drive, so we didn’t imbibe.
One of the butchers we spied had pies in the window, they looked tasty, and I couldn’t resist them. Laura went in and purchased a pork and black pudding pie, and a pork and apple pie, while I kept a very firm old on Barley who was seriously eager to go in the butchers and help Laura.
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The meaty aromas coming from the butchers (Thompson J, 125 High St Northallerton, North Yorkshire DL7 8PQ), were driving Barley a little crazy.

After the pie purchase, we continued walking until Laura spotted a market stall selling baked goods. Laura perused the stall for a while before deciding to purchase some vegetable samosas. I reheated the samosas a couple of days after we’d bought them, they were fairly large, had a lot of filling; various vegetables, obviously as they were vegetable samosas, and a good amount of spice, they were might tasty indeed. Another good buy.
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Last but not least to go into our shopping bag, was some bread from Olivia’s Bakery and Cafe. I bought a sourdough loaf, a baguette, and a trio of rolls.
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The bread was excellent quality. The baguette reminded us of the ones we used to buy when we lived in rural France. The sourdough was as good as any I’ve ever made, and that is high praise indeed.
All three of us enjoyed our trip to Northallerton Farmers Market, and I’m sure we will return.

Blog post by Richard Randall

Stray Aid Charity Dog Show and Gala, Hardwick Park, County Durham

Last Sunday we decided to go to the Stray Aid Charity Dog Show and Gala.
It was being held in Hardwick Park, Sedgefield, County Durham.
Sedgefield is a mere 30 minutes away from us here in Easington Colliery, but thanks to the wonderful integrated SatNav in our Citroen C5, we got to enjoy a much longer drive through the Durham countryside. In fact our Citroen SatNav decided to almost triple the time it should have taken to arrive at Hardwick Park. Maybe Citroen have shares in the oil industry? So it’s beneficial for them to get you to drive further than needed, all in order to boost their share dividend.
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When we did eventually arrive at Hardwick Park, we parked up, chucked a couple of quid into the Pay and Display machine, and and headed into the show area.
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Barley, our rescue Lurcher (adopted from Stray Aid) was overjoyed at being around so many other dogs. He’s a very social young lad, who loves the company of other dogs.
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We had a look at some of the stalls, and we grabbed a late breakfast; a pulled pork roll and a bottle of coke, which we shared as we watched the dogs wandering around.
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We mooched round, milling with the other dog owners, and letting Barley meet lots of the other hounds.
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There was a speech by someone from Durham County Council, I can’t remember her name.
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Then we watched some of the events in the show ring.
We would have entered Barley into some of them, but then that would not have been fair on the other dogs; he’s pretty perfect so would definitely have won every event he entered. I’m not biased.
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My only gripe about this event was the music coming from the P.A. system. It was very loud, and low quality. We noticed that some of the dogs found it a little distressing.
Having said that, I’m really glad we went to the Stray Aid Charity Dog Show and Gala, and we’re looking forward to going again next year to support the wonderful work that Stray Aid does for animals in need.

Blog post by Richard Randall

Quayside Sunday Market, Newcastle-upon-Tyne

For the last few weeks we have been checking the weather with regards to visiting the Quayside Sunday Market in Newcastle-upon-Tyne.
Up until yesterday it had been raining most Sundays, according to the forecast. Yesterday the weather forecast was good, which was ironic because when we departed Easington Colliery it was lashing down with rain.
Thankfully by the time we arrived in Gateshead, and parked near the BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, the rain had stopped, but it was still very overcast, and there was a chill in the air.

Gateshead Millennium Bridge
Gateshead Millennium Bridge

We parked up and walked over the Gateshead Millennium Bridge into Newcastle-Upon-Tyne.
It was our first ever visit to Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, despite having lived a mere 30 minutes drive away for nearly two years now, but we do not believe in rushing things.

Tyne Bridge
Tyne Bridge

We had a wander along the stalls in the Quayside Market, which was a little smaller then we’d expected, then we veered into to the town for a little while, to have a look round and take some photos.
If the weather had been sunnier I would definitely have shot a lot more photos, but even though it was very dull and cloudy I still managed to snap quite a few shots; mainly of the buildings near to the market.
Mini photo safari over we headed back to the market to do a little shopping at some of the food stalls.

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Bessie Surtees House

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Sage Gateshead

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Sunday Morning left-overs after a Saturday Night in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne
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Back in the Quayside Market we got stuck into mass consumerism, well, maybe mini consumerism is a more accurate description. First on the list of purchases were some sausages from the Geordie Banger Company. This was the main reason we wanted to go to the Quayside Sunday Market; to buy some of these tasty bangers. We had picked-up some of their fine bangers when we visited the Bishop Auckland Food Festival 2015 a few weeks ago, and they were mighty tasty.
We’d purchased the Geordie Banger sausages the first time, so this time I wanted to try some of their other sausages.
They sell three packs of sausages for £10, I chose a pack of the Venison, Broon Ale, and the Black & White sausages.
I cooked one of each of the different sausages last night for me and Laura to share for our dinner, all of which were very good, we especially enjoyed the Black & White, which is pork with black pudding – very tasty!
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Next purchase were a couple of Pastis de Natas, a Portuguese custard tart. Many years ago when we lived in little Lisbon (Vauxhall) in London, we would often have one of these with a coffee for breakfast in our local cafe.
These were equally as good as the Portuguese custard tarts we’d eaten in London, or indeed the ones we enjoyed in Portugal. Having said that, I’m pleased I only bought us one custard tart each, because they were very sweet.
I think it’s because our tastes have changed, we don’t have much sugar in our diet now, and in London we always ate our Pastis de Natas accompanied with an espresso, the bitterness of which balanced the sweetness of the pastry.
Pastis de Natas
My last purchase of the morning was a selection of cheese, from one of the two cheese stalls at the Quayside Sunday Market. The stall had a decent choice of cheese, of which I chose four; a cheese with charcoal; which is reportedly good for the digestion, another was called Black Bomber from Snowdonia, plus a soft goats cheese, and a cheddar with chilli in it.
Thankfully we’re not lactose intolerant.
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As we wandered back towards the car Laura vanished from sight, she had found a stall selling stuff for pets, and she is a real sucker for buying treats for our Lurcher, Barley. He ended up with a Tugg Plus chew bone from Husse. The chew bone is made with chicken and green tea, and is all natural. Hopefully Barley will enjoy it, and it will help keep his pearly whites clean.
Husse
It was an enjoyable morning. We got to see a bit of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, and we come away with a few goodies. Best of all – we kept dry.
Blog post by Richard Randall

Death on Horden Beach

Today we took our Lurcher, Barley down to Crimdon Beach for a gentle run. All was going well until he found a dead seal (bottom photo) and decided to rub his face all over it.
The seal was not the only dead critter on Crimdon Beach today. I also spotted a statfish, crab and what was left of a seagull.
Starfish
Seagull
Crab
Dead Seal

Blog post by Richard Randall

Bishop Auckland Food Festival 2015

On Saturday the 18th of April we headed to the Bishop Auckland Food Festival . Luckily for us we had a chauffeur, o.k. maybe not a real chauffeur, no cap and uniform etc. But a friend opted to be the designated driver for the trip. Happy Days!
The Stanley Jefferson
We motored from Easington Colliery to Bishop Auckland, where we easily found parking in the town centre. While the goal was the Bishop Auckland Food Festival, our first stop was The Stanley Jefferson (5 Market Place, Bishop Auckland DL14 7NJ), a Wetherspoon pub which is right in the centre of Bishop Auckland.
We ordered 3 classic breakfasts; a basic fry-up consisting of egg, bacon, sausage, hash-browns, tomato, baked beans, and toast. Cheap and filling, grub – no complaints from us. To help wash the food down we ordered a pint of Maximus (Maxim Brewery) for me. Mrs. R had a pint of Coffee Porter, also from the Maxim Brewery. Our chauffeur had to make do with a cup of tea.
Maximus Beer
coffee porter
IMG_2834Breakfast and beer out of the way we headed into the Bishop Auckland Food Festival, which started just outside The Stanley Jefferson where several stalls were selling various cooked food items; pies, burgers, hotdogs etc.
Having had our fill of beer and breakfast, well, at least two of us with regards to the beer, none of the cooked food that was available in Bishop Auckland Market Place was really of any interest to the three of us.
In fact when we started browsing the fresh food stalls, the small samples on offer were also of little interest, given our full bellies.
IMG_2832Despite having deliberately eaten before we started shopping; so as to stop ourselves buying absolutely everything we saw (we always try not to food shop on an empty stomach) , we (Mrs.R and I) managed to ignore our bursting waistlines and make a few purchases.
Our chauffeur, who will hence force be called Paul,  also got in to the ‘retail therapy mode’.
Given the beer and carb buzz from breakfast, I can’t remember the exact order of our shopping, so the rest of this blog post is a bit of a blur.
Bishop Auckland Food Festival

Bishop Auckland Food FestivalWe wandered round looking at the food stalls, stopping whenever the goods got our tastebuds tingling.
I think our first purchase was a couple of rosemary sourdough rolls. We ate them that same evening. They were nice bread rolls, we could taste the rosemary, but their sourdough heritage seemed a little slim.
I’ve made a lot of sourdough bread over the years, and this bread really did not have a sourdough flavour, or texture.
Mrs.R said she didn’t think they particularly tasted homemade either, more like basic supermarket white bread rolls – she said they were very ‘white bread’ – literally.

IMG_3221Next stop was the Northumberland Cheese Company stall, where we purchased a small block of Elsdon goats cheese, and Paul, having tasted their Cheviot cheese, and the Blagdon Blue, decided to buy a block of the Cheviot cheese.
The couple running the cheese stall seemed happy to chat to us about the various cheese they were selling, they were friendly, and now they’re famous – that’s them below.

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Elsdon Goat CheeseWhen you have bread and cheese, what could you possibly want next?
The obvious answers is sausages.
While we may have been a little South of Geordieland, we could not resist buying a pack of Geordie Banger Sausages from the Geordie Banger Co stall.
Geordie Banger
Geordie BangerThe guy working on the Geordie Banger Co stall was cooking a fresh batch of sausages for customers to sample, but we didn’t want to wait to taste them, the seriously good aromas coming from the pan was enough to make our mouths water.
The Geordie Banger is a pork sausage with leek, mushroom, and onion.
I grilled the Geordie Banger sausages for our lunch the day after purchasing them. The sausages were very tasty, good and meaty, excellent flavours, and no nasty gristle or chunks of fat that some sausages have in them. They were excellent, and we’d definitely buy them again.
geordie bangerBangers bought, we then headed into the grounds of Auckland Castle to explore the other sections of the market.
Paul was keen to get to the Arts and Crafts tent, because he had his heart set on a tweed man-bag, but sadly he could not find one.
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Bishop Auckland Food FestivalPaul was gutted about the lack of tweed man-bags, but suddenly his eyes lit-up with joy – he’d spotted a market stall selling cupcakes.
I’m not sure how many cupcakes he bought and scoffed, but by the time Mrs.R was served she had to limit herself to just one cupcake – a Caramac cupcake.
Mrs.R wasn’t too disappointed that Paul had almost left the cupcake stall bare, because she said she doesn’t particularly like cupcakes, but that she had a craving for some full-on sugar.
It wasn’t until later that evening that Mrs.R finally ate her Caramac cupcake, which was as she’d expected a serious sugar-rush. In fact it was seriously sickly sweet, and a good reminder to her of why she rarely eats them, and why she doesn’t consider cupcakes a favourite sweet treat.
cupcake
cupcakeWith all of the cupcake excitement, Paul was the over-excited one, not Mrs.R, I decided it was time for a refreshing drink, so treated us to a 9ct Shimmering Blood Orange Vodka with Lemonade from the Raisthorpe Manor stall. The drink was pleasant, lots of ice, a couple of pieces of strawberry, a piece of cucumber, and for just £2.50.
Raisthorpe ManorBy now Mrs.R was feeling a little guilty, at having left our dog, Barley, at home to fend for himself, so she was over-the-moon when she spotted a stall selling dog treats. We purchased a small bag of Wellybix lamb flavoured dog treats for the mutt, which slightly lessened the guilt Mrs.R was feeling.

Later at home as we unpacked our shopping, Barley was very interested in the dog treats. As soon as he saw the bag, he got busy sniffing and salivating, and having eaten a generous amount to test the taste and quality, he said Wellybix dog treats are his new favourite – but he would prefer us not to go out without him, surely these treats can be ordered by post.
wellybix
I also had guilt issues at having left Barley our Lurcher at home, but buying dog treats would have done nothing to assuage my guilt, so there was only one thing to do – and that was to head to the Tipple Tent for a beer.
IMG_2839First up was a pint of Griffin’s Irish Stout from the Hill Island MicroBrewery (Fowlers Yard, 7 Back Silver Street Durham DH1 3RA).
The people on the stall were friendly, the beer smelt good, and it tasted really good too, it was a decent stout. We would have happily stayed for a couple more pints, but we didn’t want to abuse our nominated driver.
IMG_3217Griffin's Irish StoutMrs.R and I shared the pint of Griffin’s Irish Stout while multi-tasking – seeing what else was on offer in the booze tent. The last stall we looked at also sold beer, and we thought it would have been rude of us not to try a pint of that beer too. We ordered a pint of Black as Owt from the Yard of Ale Brew Company. This beer was also pretty decent, although a much lighter stout.
It was as I paid for the pint of Black as Owt and Mrs.R took a photo of the beer pump that we were treated to a proper belly-laugh. A guy standing at the stall watched Mrs.R take the photo, turned to his girlfriend and said. ”Beer Nerd!” Hahaha! A more accurate description would be ‘Photo-Nerd’ as she’s obsessed with taking photos.

black as owtA pint of Stout in our hands, we left the Tipple Tent, but for some illogical reason we could not take our drinks out of the Tipple Tent area. A bloke wearing a security vest told us that alcohol was not allowed out of the area. We thought this was very odd for several reasons. The main reason being that the Bishop Auckland Food Festival website stated that you could take drinks to food areas, and what was even more odd was the fact that you could also buy drinks in other parts of the Bishop Auckland Food Festival area.
This silly rule meant that we had to stay in the Tipple Tent area to finish our beers. But on the plus side we found some seating, and the sun was out.

Back in the food stall area, having caned our beers; because we didn’t want to sit down for ages supping them, we made a few more purchases.
I picked up a Pork and Black Pudding Pie from the The Crusty Pie Company. I am a fan of pork pies, if they’re good quality, and this pie was extremely good. I really wish I’d bought more of them. Delicious!
Pork and Black Pudding Pie
pieBoth Mrs.R and Paul purchased a jar of Wild Flower Honey from the South Durham Honey stall. There were several different types of honey available, but having tasted the Wild Flower variety they said it was so good they didn’t need to try the other flavours. The Wild Flower Honey is not too sweet, with lovely floral flavours.
wild flower honey

Our last purchase of the day was a small pot of Lemon Curd Cheese from the Leaside Cheesemakers stall. We haven’t eaten any yet, but I did have a tiny taste and it’s nice, very creamy, a good amount of lemon flavour, and sweet. I doubt it will be in the fridge for very long, before we scoff the lot.
Leaside Cheesemakers
Summary
The three of us had a very good morning at the Bishop Auckland Food Festival. In fact it was far better than we had imagined. There was a very good range of fresh local produce, ranging from bread, meat, game, cheese etc. Paul said it was definitely worth the drive.

Disclaimer: Paul neither likes tweed man-bags, or cupcakes – but he loves driving, so hopefully he’ll be our ‘Chauffeur’ for the Bishop Auckland Food Festival next year.