We (sisters Emma and Lucy Reeves) set up Muddy Matches earlier this year with a view to providing an online community where country-minded, or ‘muddy’, people of all ages could meet other like-minded people, be it for shared interests, friendship or dating.
Any person who loves the countryside and is not afraid of a bit of mud.
We developed our concept of ‘muddiness’ based upon our understanding that the countryside, and being country-minded, means different things to different people.
We spent a long time trying to figure out the one underlying thing that unites country-minded people from all walks of life – but the answer was obvious: mud.
It doesn’t matter whether you like walking or shooting, whether you grew up in the countryside or are just hoping to move there, whether you actually live in the countryside or just like to spend time there; if you think you’re country-minded, the only thing you can’t have is an aversion to mud!
In fact, we believe all of us fall somewhere along a sliding scale of ‘muddiness’ and ‘towniness’ and have designed a tongue-in-cheek quiz to calculate your so-called Muddy-Townie Ratio.
Our Muddy Marathon
With this muddy diversity in mind and since Muddy Matches is essentially about meeting people, we decided we needed to get out there and do just that: meet people.
So we came up with the idea for our Muddy Marathon, a two-month tour of rural Great Britain in a motorhome we have customised to look like a country cottage.
Here’s a picture of us outside the motorhome before we set to work on it:
Emma and Lucy in front of the motorhome
We think you’ll agree, it looks a little different now:
Look out for us on the road!
What we’re up to:
We’ve got all sorts of things planned along the way, from duck flighting in the Borders to sheepdog training in Wales, from cooking game in Kent to training with a mountain rescue team in Cumbria.
More details are gradually being posted on our Muddy Matches Itinerary and Shooting Times have been kind enough to let us write about our adventures in this blog.
It’s not just about us meeting people though, so we’re putting on a number of social events in each region for our members and for anyone muddy who wishes to join us.
As well as hosting a couple of bigger parties, such as a ‘Deer and Beer Night’ with the Essex Young Farmers, we are also organising some smaller, more informal gatherings in country pubs along the way.
Look out for the following in your area:
Muddy Pub Quiz – come and put your countryside knowledge to the test! As well as being a chance to use your brain, it will also be a great opportunity to get to know some other muddy people in your area.
Pub Grub Night – the idea behind these is to get some like-minded, muddy people together to grab a bite to eat in a nice country pub. A very relaxed affair, with each person paying for their own food and drink, this is a great opportunity to meet some new people in your area. Come alone or with a mate, it is entirely up to you.
Pub Social Night – these are, quite simply, just a good excuse for a few cheeky drinks in a nice country pub, with the added bonus of potentially meeting some like-minded, muddy people. The more the merrier, so feel free to bring along as many muddy friends as you like.
Where we’ll be:
– EAST Week 1 – 22 Oct to 27 Oct
Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex, Hertfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire
– SOUTH EAST Week 2 – 29 Oct to 3 Nov
Kent, Sussex, Surrey, Hampshire, Berkshire, Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Middlesex
– SOUTH WEST Week 3 – 5 Nov to 10 Nov
Cornwall, Devon, Somerset, Dorset, Gloucestershire, Wiltshire
– WALES Week 4 – 12 Nov to 17 Nov
North, Mid and South Wales
– WEST MIDLANDS Week 5 – 19 Nov to 24 Nov
Derbyshire, Staffordshire, Shropshire, Herefordshire, Worcestershire, Warwickshire
– SCOTLAND Week 6 – 26 Nov to 1 Dec
Highlands, Morayshire, Aberdeenshire, Angus, Perthshire, Argyllshire, Stirlingshire, Fife, Lanarkshire, Ayrshire, Scottish Borders, Dumfries & Galloway, Lothian
– NORTHERNMOST NORTH Week 7 – 3 Dec to 8 Dec
Cumbria, Northumberland, Durham
– NORTH Week 8 – 10 Dec to 15 Dec
Yorkshire, Lancashire, Cheshire
– EAST MIDLANDS Week 9 – 17 Dec to 22 Dec
Lincolnshire, Northamptonshire, Leicestershire, Nottinghamshire, Rutland
We couldn’t have started this trip without the input from our members, our friends and family, and from kindly strangers. We’ve had some brilliant suggestions, from great country pubs to really muddy characters that we must meet along the way, and most of them are featuring in our tour.
If you have any suggestions for your neck of the woods, or you would like to get involved, it’s not too late – please get in touch with firstname.lastname@example.org or post your comments below this blog.