Craftseller - - On The Move -

Her­alded as the “Covent Gar­den of the Cotswolds” and “Not­ting Hill with wellies”, it’s easy to see why any artsy town mouse would come scur­ry­ing to the steep streets of Stroud. With its own fringe fes­ti­val, artis­tic neigh­bour­hood elite and a jaw-drop­pingly beau­ti­ful land­scape, this bo­hemian en­clave is ev­ery coun­trylov­ing crafter’s par­adise. Satur­day setup year-round at The Farm­ers’ Mar­ket. Find a char­ac­ter­is­tic ‘live-off-the-fatof-the-land’ love­li­ness at al­most ev­ery stall like at Anne Town­ley’s offering of home­grown flow­ers, fruit and pot­tery where blooms burst from pret­tily-painted pots, stop­ping peo­ple in their tracks. “That bunch has its own bum­ble­bee,” Anne chuck­les over the cheer­ful mar­ket ruckus. Stop by Claire Pow­ell’s stall to lust over her ar­ti­san set of hand­crafted bowls and vases. How would she de­scribe the mar­ket? “Like it is!” she ex­claims, mo­tion­ing to the morn­ing buzz. The pos­i­tiv­ity passes through the cob­ble­stoned street, peak­ing at Dav­ina Wynne Jones’ pop-up plot sprout­ing medic­i­nal plants. “They can do ev­ery­thing,” Dav­ina claims. “Pan­sies are great for eczema, rose­mary that’s fab for mem­ory, sage is good if you’re menopausal…” But it’s Dav­ina’s home­made lo­tions and po­tions that cause a real stir. “Three peo­ple have made a pass at me – and it’s not even mid­day!” squeals one cus­tomer, herald­ing its “phe­nom­e­nal” pow­ers. “You mightn’t make it out of the mar­ket if you try some,” Dav­ina warns. I don’t head off im­me­di­ately but that’s down to Keith Willingale’s home­grown wine that com­ple­ments the free-range feast on of­fer. “Eng­land makes the best rosé,” Keith says. Well of course, I needed proof.

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