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Discover the hidden delights of Wiltshire.

Our members represent a rich community of independent local businesses providing quality and unique products and experiences.

Find local artisan food & drink, unique gifts, art, local shops, events, places to stay & things to do in Wiltshire.

  • The Harrow at Little Bedwyn

    The Michelin-starred Harrow at Little Bedwyn opened in December 1998 following a chance remark from friends which led Sue and Roger Jones to view ...»

  • Charlie Howe Design

    Business Consultant Jenny Holt has always been passionate about design and interiors and had a flair for creative projects. ...»

  • Indigo Antiques & Interiors

    Inspired by a love of travel Marion and Richard Lightbown set up Indigo Antiques & Interiors in the early 1970s to introduce beautiful hand crafted Asian furniture to the UK....»

  • Wiltshire Wildlife Trust

    Wiltshire Wildlife Trust has existed since the 60s with the aim of reconnecting people with their local wildlife and landscape....»

  • Troutbeck Guest House

    Troutbeck is a stunning guesthouse located opposite the Michelin starred Red Lion at East Chisenbury. ...»

  • Marlborough College Summer School

    In 1978, thanks to an air traffic controller’s strike, the presenters from the BBC “Holiday” programme had to cancel their planned trip to Spain ...»

  • Love Food

    Lucinda Bevan is a nutritional therapist with a keen interest in the brain. She runs lively and informative nutritional cookery demonstrations...»

Best coffee in a rural location

Sam Bertram

5 October 2017

Sticks & Stones is a lovely relaxed rural café & lifestyle shop in Woodborough near Pewsey. Co-owner Garp Flack has always made the most beautiful wooden kitchenware so we spoke to his wife, co-owner Liis Flack, to find out what inspired them to open a café. What inspired you to transition from a shop selling Garp’s beautiful wares to opening a café? ‘Back in the day we had a studio and stock room at the back of Wiltshire Barn in Nursery Farm, Woodborough, which we used as a base to wholesale Garp’s kitchen accessories. We briefly had a shop in Marlborough, but when we got offered new premises at Nursery Farm, with a front on to the car park, we knew we wanted to focus on that space.   As with all rural businesses attracting customers is your number one priority. The new shop had a kitchen, if a little hidden, so we focused on uncovering everything, doing some refurbishments and opening up the space. It seemed a logical step to open a café alongside the shop. My mother is a chef in Estonia and Garp worked in the restaurant trade before leaving London. Although we said we’d never work in catering again, we kept coming back to it.  It’s obviously part of our DNA and we’re loving being involved in hospitality again. You’ve got a real loyal customer base, how have you achieved that? We started with the tiniest coffee machine and cakes from a local baker and we’ve gradually expanded our menu. We’ve got a great reputation for serving delicious coffee. Garp is pedantic about the quality of our coffee and regularly asks our staff to make him a coffee to ensure we’re keeping up the good standard. We’ve tried to make the café a little more interesting by buying local when we can but if not looking to the country of our births, Estonia and South Africa. We stock my aunt’s Estonian herbal teas and lovely leather handbags from Cape Town. We also have fabulous loyal staff. We incorporate food trends, the fact that people want to be healthy and serve what’s in season as much as possible. We serve a variety and our portion sizes are good while not being wasteful. One regular customer has a number of allergies, and we bend over backwards to make something he can eat. There is some Estonian influence – we love to cook chanterelles and wild mushrooms in season and serve smoked fish which we get from a local business. Some of our favourites are French Onion soup with croutons and gruyere and bagel with cream cheese and local salmon and avocado.  Many of our local customers work from home and come in to get out or meet clients. We have stay at home parents and we bribe dogs with treats so they drag their owners here! One local artist visits a few times a week, and just sits outside and relaxes. On a sunny day you could be anywhere in Europe. Come and see us – there are lots of other businesses to browse at Nursery Farm while you’re here.  http://www.uksticksandstones.com/     

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Kids Christmas gifts galore

Sam Bertram

23 October 2017

Radish Loves is a children’s shop with a difference. Located just off Marlborough High Street it’s teeming with children’s clothes and unique gifts you won’t find anywhere else. We spoke to owner Amy Willsher to find out what she’s got in store for Christmas. What Christmas treats have you got for kids? ‘I think there’s a perception that we’re a baby shop which isn’t true. Our range has things for new-borns right up to young teenagers. We’ve got something for everybody – from stocking fillers to the bigger presents. If you’re looking for presents under £10 there’s plenty of choice. ‘Unicorn snot’ with its scented range of lip gloss and body glitters is new and already extremely popular. Girls love the pompom hair bands, clips, necklaces, bag brooches & pins. There are also fingers puppets and plenty of tattoos and stickers. The nail varnish is child-friendly and completely chemical free, and for the boys there are notebooks, spy pens, bouncy balls and yoyos, slimy slugs and lots more. I’ve started stocking a larger range of Maileg as it’s proving really popular. It’s a Danish brand with gorgeous bunnies and mice. It’s beautifully made with my favourite being The Princess and the Pea – a mouse sleeping on several mattresses with a pea hiding beneath. The mini furniture, clothing suitcases, tents and sleeping bags all fit for the mice are also fabulous. Another popular brand is Candylab cars - beautiful hand painted Beechwood classic American cars. They’re really fun with some quirky features like a magnetic surfboard which snaps on to the roof.  If looking to jazz up playrooms, nurseries or bedrooms Fiona Walker’s felt animals have just come instore. Whether it’s a dinosaur or flamingo head or hooks you can hang on wall they look great. Try a Little Lovely Co, ghost or popsicle bedroom light or some rainbow shelves to house the books. Hang a dream catcher on a child’s bedroom window to catch the bad dreams. And there’s plenty of glitz – furry, sparkly bags and glittery skirts and tutus. With winter encroaching we’ve got woolly jumpers, hats and scarves and plenty for that special Christmas outfit.’ Halloween is soon, what have you got planned? ‘We stock lots of party accessories and we’ve extended our party range to include Halloween. There are spooky cookie cutters, plates, cupcake cases and tattoos. On the Saturday before Halloween we’re holding an instore event from 12.00 to 3.00pm. There’ll be tattoos, balloon giveaways and a real-life fairy coming to visit. She’ll be granting wishes and telling stories. It should be great fun.’ And if people can’t come into the shop, they can shop online? ‘Yes, we’re an online shop too and we’ll also be at some other venues this Christmas. I’ve got a pop-up shop at Cobbs on Saturday 28th October, Saturday 2nd December and Saturday 9th December. I can also be found at the Christmas fairs at St Francis, Pinewood and Bowood. I’d love to see you there.’ www.radishloves.com

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A gift idea a day

Shop local

From Sunday 29th October we'll be giving a gift idea a day - all from local Wiltshire independents. You'll be amazed what you can find. Follow us on FB, Instagram or Twitter to keep in the loop. 

 

 

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