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Blog (Food) - Visit Wiltshire

The Farm Cookery School

A Spotlight on Gretchen Winter, from The Farm Cookery School

My name is Gretchen Winter and I created and own The Farm Cookery School on Netherstreet Farm in Bromham.  I also work our 300 acre Beef farm with my husband Matthew Winter.  I have always worked in some aspect of The Catering Industry and completed a degree in Hotel and Catering Management at Portsmouth University before going on to work in Restaurant and Event Management in London for 10 years. 

John Blake

A spotlight on John Blake, Marlborough College

I joined Marlborough College as the Director of Enterprise in July 2014. I am responsible for revenue generation from events such as Summer School and our new School of English and Culture for unaccompanied overseas teenagers, our retail operations and the hiring out of our sports facilities.

Cosy Club dessert

7 totally scrummy-looking desserts to try in Wiltshire

Who doesn’t love a dessert? After watching far too much MasterChef over the past few months, it’s got us inspired to find out more about some of the tantalising desserts that are on offer around the county. Take a look at these beauties…

Red Lion Freehouse

Top spots to enjoy some alfresco dining

When the weather’s fine, there’s nothing better than sitting outside with a glass of wine in your hand and enjoying the fresh air over some food.

Here’s a handy guide giving you some of the top spots to enjoy alfresco dining in Wiltshire and reasons why you should book a table now!


What makes the perfect breakfast?

It’s claimed to be the most important meal of the day so we asked some of our local bed and breakfast providers here in Wiltshire what they think makes the perfect breakfast. Warning – reading on might make you hungry!

Christine Wallace

Perfecting pastry, and discovering some Bake Off secrets at Vaughan’s Cookery School

I have enjoyed several courses at Vaughan’s Cookery School in the past and have always come away having had a great time and learnt some new skills, so when I had the opportunity to join the Perfect Pastry course Mr H decided it was time he broadened his culinary skills, and join me. Vaughan’s Cookery School is located in the lovely town of Devizes, and we took the opportunity to stop off in town first, as the range of independent shops there offer some lovely different gifts, and I had a few birthday presents to get. Mr H used the opportunity to call into Wadworth Visitor Centre Shop and pick up a few souvenirs for himself!

Spring Flowers

Fast forward into February: 17 ways to beat the winter blues

If, like me, the start of the year has left you feeling all a bit ‘January-ish’, it helps to have something to look forward to. So here are 17 great ideas for things to see and do around Wiltshire that are sure to brighten up the first few months of 2017.

Beatons tearooms

A winter’s walk in Tisbury

I love getting the opportunity to don my walking boots and explore the county and I had the opportunity to do just that on a recent visit to Tisbury.

Buttle Farm

Learning about the slow food movement at Buttle Farm

Nestled on the edge of the village of Compton Bassett in north Wiltshire lies Buttle Farm. I met with the owners, Robert and Sara Buttle, who took me on a tour of the farm so I could learn more about what goes on here and the diversification of the farm.

Edington, Wiltshire

Unveiling hidden gems in the Wiltshire village of Edington

On a beautiful, sunny summer day in Wiltshire I headed off to Edington, four miles from Westbury, famed for its White Horse, for what turned out to be an extraordinary afternoon.

Every August for the past 60 years this small village has welcomed some of the best choristers from cathedral and collegiate choirs around England for a week long festival of music and liturgy in the priory church. I had been invited to go along to find out more as, like many others not directly involved in the sacred music circle, I was unaware of the quality and importance of this event.

Rowdey Cow

Horse Holidays and School Holiday Fun

Deep in the Wiltshire countryside, and just a short distance from Caen Hill Locks on the Kennet & Avon Canal, you’ll find the Rowdey Cow Farm Café and Ice Cream Parlour. It was my first visit here, I’m normally driving past on my way to meetings, but this time I made the effort to pop in, after all I was pretty sure they had some ice cream with my name on it!

The Farm Cookery School

A Beginner's Cookery Course at Farm Cookery School

If I’m honest, although a ‘foodie’, I’m not the greatest of cooks. Keen to learn and appreciate more essential practical cooking skills, I attended an adult essential skills course at the newly-opened Farm Cookery School near Bromham.

Afternoon tea at Manor House Hotel

Top places for afternoon tea in Wiltshire

It’s not long now until Afternoon Tea Week (the second week of August) and this got us thinking about this foodie treat. We’ve put together a list of top places you can enjoy afternoon tea in Wiltshire so whether you are a jam or cream first person, there are lots of places to indulge in Wiltshire…

Vaughan's Cookery School

Discovering Gluten Free can be tasty!

Wiltshire hotels, B&Bs and food and drink establishments are renowned for their friendly and accommodating welcome, so the response was good when we recently offered a Gluten Free cookery course, in conjunction with Vaughan’s Cookery School in Devizes.

Lucknam Park Cookery School

Perfecting the art of breakfast at Lucknam Park

Having been battered by hail and thunder on my way to Colerne, my mood brightened as I drove up the beautiful tree lined drive to Lucknam Park Hotel & Spa. On this occasion I was headed for the Cookery School, and know I could have gone in the entrance nearer that building, but can never resist the stunning drive!


A showstopping night in Chippenham

Chippenham, a market town in north Wiltshire, has recently been awarded the prestigious Purple Flag status for the high standard and safety of the town centre at night. A major contribution to attaining this award was the refurbishment of the Neeld Community and Arts Centre, so I was really pleased to have the opportunity to visit the Centre, and experience more of what Chippenham has to offer the evening visitor, on Friday night.

Exploring Wiltshire churches

Saintly delights in Wiltshire

You may have seen that we’ve just launched some new Saints and Sinners trails in conjunction with The Churches Conservation Trust (CCT). The routes give people the opportunity to explore some of our historic Wiltshire churches with a foodie stop nearby.
I made a visit with Linden from The CCT to two of these churches to discover some of the hidden treasures that lay within them…

Japanese cooking

Japanese cookery course

For visitors and locals alike, Wiltshire offers the opportunity to learn new skills in the relaxing and beautiful surroundings of the county, be that driving a racing car, skydiving, or cooking! I have had the pleasure of doing a number of cookery courses at Vaughan’s Kitchen previously and always found them very enjoyable. However, it was with a little trepidation that I joined the Japanese Cookery course as I have never really eaten Japanese food, and certainly never cooked it, but, always ready to try something new, I signed up!

Puddings and tarts

Puddings and Tarts

When it comes to the kitchen, I’m certainly no MasterChef Champion. However, like Gregg Wallace, I do have a sweet tooth and a big passion for puddings. When eating out, I’m always drawn straight to the puddings and dessert menu to whet my appetite. And, if there’s some sort of chocolate or sticky toffee pudding on the menu, then nothing else usually gets a look in.

Holiday Inn Salisbury - Stonehenge

A lunch stop near the stones

On a blustery day after paying a visit to Stonehenge, I made a visit to the recently refurbished Solstice Bar and Grill at the Holiday Inn Salisbury – Stonehenge, located on the outskirts of Amesbury and just a couple of miles from the famous stone circle.

Vaughan's Kitchen

In the style of Great British Bake Off

If you fancy honing your cookery skills then one of our Wiltshire cookery schools is an ideal place to perfect your techniques. I joined Vaughan’s Kitchen Cookery School in Devizes for an artisan bread making course.

Tisbury Treat

A Tisbury Treat

Set in the beautiful Cranborne Chase and West Wiltshire Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty is Tisbury. The main High Street here is dotted with independent shops with beautifully dressed window displays and a friendly atmosphere. It’s a bustling place too with lots of locals out for their morning strolls, enjoying a drink in the café or just having a chat.


Top 10 Picnic Spots in Wiltshire

We all love a good picnic don’t we? We’ve had a chat here in the office and come up with our top 10 picnic spots in the county. Share your favourites too!