More treats right on our doorstep in Willington can be found at Bevington’s Tea Room and I visited earlier this week as an early Mother's Day treat with my mum. This quaint white cottage in the village centre is the next-door neighbour of the Dragon, and may well be the cause of some agonising among the hungry over which of the two to visit. Bevington’s has everything you’d hope for in a traditional tea shop: rose-patterned wallpaper; vintage china, both on display and on the table; tea in proper teapots; fancy cups; sugar lumps with tongs; excellent tea and coffee; and a wide range of sweet and savoury delights.
You’re also assured of a friendly welcome, especially when you use your Silver Ann 2 discount card. If you’re lucky you might also be party to some of Mark’s banter with his regulars. They were discussing the next day’s lunch menu when we arrived; Mark was jokingly pondering adding Thai curry to the menu but the old boy didn’t fancy the prospect much. He was similarly wary of Coq au Vin, but much keener on Chicken in Red Wine!
As you can see, you won’t be disappointed if you plan to lunch at Bevington’s, and hearty breakfasts are also a speciality. But we were determined to take tea, and our three-tier, tea-for-two stand was piled high with goodies. White and granary sandwiches with beef & horseradish, home-cooked ham, chicken salad and cheese & tomato. Well-risen scones with a choice of strawberry and raspberry jams and clotted cream. And best of all, two thick slabs of sponge cake, which we took home for later. That evening, our verdict was that the salted caramel cake trumped the coffee and walnut. But it was very close.
You can read more about Bevingtons and other places to visit on our 'Things to Do' page here
Bevingtons Tea Room and Gifts, 5, The Green, Willington, DE65 6BP
After leaving the church we walked through Repton village to the ancient Cross. This was the centre of the medieval village, with its Wednesday market and two annual fairs. We admired the historic buildings scattered throughout the village; a 'Repton Trail' leaflet produced by Repton Village History Group provides interesting information on some of these buildings. You can find a copy on board the Silver Ann 2, along with some 'Repton Rambles' leaflets giving routes of some circular walks around the village.
Next we followed our noses to the 'Greedy Pig Butchers' where the delicious aroma of baking pies was wafting out of the doorway. Inside we found an array of tasty goodies: game pie; pheasant orange and port pie; pork pie topped with mango chutney; black pudding pate with beer all particularly caught my eye. There is a traditional meat counter, shelves of chutneys, sauces, baked goods and outside some fresh fruit and vegetables. A real gem of a find for those on a self-catering holiday. We snapped up one of the pies for our tea and can confirm it was as delicious as it smelt!
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Having got to Trent Lock too early ourselves for lunch we ate hearty sausage and mozzarella paninis and home-made cakes at the nature reserve, sat on the decking in the sunshine while grebes and tufted ducks dived for their own grub beneath us. We then made sure the army of wildfowl didn't go hungry either with some healthier bird seeds. Canada Geese and Whooper Swans ate (fairly) gently from the kids' hands. Best of all was a pair of Egyptian geese, with 9 adorable fluffy, days-old black and grey goslings.
Today I visited the charming Derbyshire village of Shardlow, whose rich canal heritage can be seen everywhere you look.
The bright and breezy early spring weather was perfect for a wander along the towpath. With the hawthorn in flower, daffodils in bloom, blossom in the trees and fluffy pussy willow branches it was a picture book scene.
We are Dan & Mary-Ann Griffin. Husband and Wife. Parents to Isabelle & James.