Christmas at Chilbolton Stores

Well another Christmas has been and gone and as always Christmas comes creeping up and suddenly it arrives and we are into the last few days. This year was no exception and the snow and ice made a usually busy time even more busy.

Thanks to everyone in Chilbolton and Wherwell, this December has been one of the most successful, helped by the increase in Christmas orders we received. In fact we received orders from as far a field as Southampton, Newbury and Whitchurch, a testament to the quality of local food produced in and around the village. Smoked Trout from the River Test Smokery, Christmas Puddings and Cakes from Emma Way (Taste) and speciality pies from Cottage Savouries were all well received by customers far and wide.

This year we added Free Range Turkeys from Noah’s Ark Farm to our traditional Christmas fare and it was fantastic that so many people chose this option as well as the traditional turkey option, which has proven a great success. Personally I thought it was one of the best turkeys I have ever cooked and eaten, but judging by the numbers of comments we’ve received I’m not the only one. In fact Jo was flagged down in Village Street last Monday, by a customer who had to tell her how good her turkey had been.

This feedback is really important, as Jo and I both want to support other local suppliers and will be passing on this to Sue and Paul at Noah’s Ark Farm. I knew we had made a good choice when I collected almost 40 turkeys on the 23rd December. Noah’s Ark Farm was a ‘real’ farm, not a ‘factory farm’ and the care that is given to the turkeys is evident in the quality of the meat. As one customer commented the turkey smelt fresh and was beautifully presented, no plastic wrapping in sight. I can guarantee we will be using Noah’s Ark Farm next Christmas.

After delivering almost 80 orders between Jo’s parents and I, we were glad when Christmas Eve arrived, together with our customary visit from Father Christmas and the Christmas post. I don’t know how he gets time to fit everything in, but he didn’t stay long, as he had a busy night ahead of him.

New Year is now rapidly approaching and we are all feeling positive about what 2011 will bring. 2010 was a tough year for all, but we are looking forward to 2011 and we both are grateful for the support and friendship that the villages provide us.

All that remains is to say Happy New Year to all from both Jo and I and we look forward to seeing you soon.

All the best

David & Jo

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