Arrow Farm Shop
We popped into hundreds of farm shops on our travels, ranging from lean-to sheds to supermarket-style food emporiums, so we were really pleased to add a proper family-run farm shop visit to our itinerary in the last week of our Marathon.
Dinah and Richard Blagg opened Arrow Farm Shop on their farm near Worksop in 1991, but they have been selling their home-grown potatoes direct to the public for a lot longer than that. Encouraged by their success with the potatoes, they decided to convert an empty potato store into a shop selling fresh fruit and vegetables. Over time, this has continued to grow and they have started to sell eggs, preserves, pickles and hand-baked biscuits and cakes, as well as opening up a butchery department and a delicatessen counter. Their potatoes, however, are still a huge draw for customers and they sell about 350 tonnes through the shop a year. Apparently they sell about 20 tonnes in Christmas week alone!
What’s nice about it, is that it is still very much a working family farm and, despite its impressive growth, the shop still has that family feel to it. Much of the meat they sell is from a local relative’s farm and, if they can’t produce it themselves, wherever possible they try to source their products from neighbouring farmers and local producers.
Some farm shops get so big, adding a novelty gift section here and a clothing line there, that they begin to feel like just another retail outlet and seem very far removed from farming. Whilst the Blaggs have lots of plans for the future, they know that farming and the local community are central to their success and are keen to keep it that way.
Open 7 days a week.