Happy Monday everyone, I hope you all had a great weekend. The sun was shining here in the UK and we spent the weekend in Wiltshire and Somerset. My husband finished work on Friday lunchtime, we jumped in the car and headed to Wiltshire, this isn't a place we're familiar with but we will definitely exploring more of this beautiful part of the country. We stopped in this pretty hotel called the Old Manor House, situated on the edge of Bradford on Avon, which is a beautiful, quaint, historical town.
The hotel was bought last summer by a couple and has been lovingly restored to it's former glory. I couldn't fault it, I felt so comfortable there, the staff were very friendly and helpful and made you feel right at home.
The lounge/ bar area was very cosy with log burners and comfortable period chairs and sofa's, there were fresh flowers in all the public area's and unusual knick knacks, like old telephones and Singer sewing machines.
The outside area was just as pretty, with a walled garden where they grow their own produce, they also have beehives and chickens and their own Smoke House, where they smoke the meat and fish, they serve on their menu.
Talking about food, we had the most amazing dinner, again in a gorgeous setting, the restaurant is called The Milking Parlour and is open to non-residents, I recommend eating there if you're in the area. The chef is Matthew Briddon, formerly from The River Cafe and the Michelin star, Heathcote restaurant, the food was second to none.
Breakfast was just as good, again in the Milking Parlour, we enjoyed a substantial farmhouse breakfast. I loved how they set the breakfast table up with fresh juices, cereals, dried fruits, yoghurt, fresh crusty bread and homemade preserves. I decided to go for the smoked salmon which was hay smoked in their Smoke House and scrambled eggs, it was delicious. In fact, I could just eat it again, right now, I've gone hungry just thinking about it.
After breakfast, we spent the morning wandering around the town, it's full of independent shops including some great vintage ones, I picked up some lovely vintage buttons. There are also some great riverside walks, one that leads you to Tithe Barns, a great little shopping area for arts and crafts.
On the afternoon, we went on to Frome, another pretty town, full of artisan shops and cobbled streets.
I found a yarn store, where I picked up some locally dyed yarn, you can tell I was pleased, can't you? There is also a great haberdashery shop opposite called Millie Moon, they have some great fabric and it's free p&p for the UK.
Our hotel for the night was in Midsomer Norton, so on our way we stopped off at Wells, a small cathedral city in Somerset. This was the first time we'd been here, we didn't stay long as it was late afternoon but what we saw of it has made us want to visit again, very soon!!!!
Saturday night we stopped at the Best Western Centurion on the outskirts of Midsomer Norton, though this is a chain, it was very well appointed and looked as though it had been recently renovated, everything looked very new and clean.
The views from the restaurant.....
The garden areas......
We decided not to have dinner at the hotel but to go for a walk into the town. We were very disappointed when we got there, I expected a pretty village with lots of country pubs and restaurants, like you see on the tv programme, Midsomer Murders!!!! Don't get me wrong, there was nothing wrong with the town itself, it was a very good High Street with lots of High Street shops but not a lot of pubs or places too eat.
We were both getting hungry by this time, so we jumped into a taxi and went back to the hotel restaurant. I'm so glad we did, again the food was exceptional, they obviously used good quality produce. I had the most amazing crab and avocado starter. Sunday morning breakfast was a very enjoyable Full English in the conservatory overlooking a parkland golf course, a perfect way to starg the day.
Sunday was another beautiful, sunny day, we travelled to Bath and sat outside the Abbey, having a cup of tea, deciding on what to see and do. Again, another beautiful city but we need to go back as my husband's back was giving him a lot of pain. I could see he was struggling so suggested we come again and see the sights when he felt better.
Instead, as the weather was so nice we drove to Weston Super Mare and sat on the pier, people watching and eating chips. This was my husband's birthday treat, we both had a fabulous time and can't wait to do it again. We both want to see more of this area.
Have a great week, my lovely friends.