We only live around a 45 minute drive away from Chatsworth so it wasn't an arduous journey and we were very surprised by how little traffic there was leading to the venue, we'd anticipated quite a big queue- i'd even packed snacks in case it was really bad but we were straight into the car park and directed to a parking spot. Our tickets were checked as we pulled into the car park and that was it, we didn't need them at any other point.
So the traffic had played ball but the weather definitely did not! It was raining the entire time we were there and it alternated between bearable and torrential. The weather certainly had an impact on how much time we spent at the event. If the weather had been dry I would have been hitting up the prosecco and strawberries and parking myself on one of the lawned areas but alas I ended up eating the paella i'd been looking forward to squashed into a corner under one of very few tented areas. The organisers had clearly hoped for better weather as very little of the event was undercover. Many stalls were open to the elements and walking between stalls and the different areas always meant a soaking.
|The view whilst eating my paella!|
Fortunately we'd packed waterproofs and wellies so we could walk around and explore whatever the weather. There were a wide variety of shops selling typical country attire such as boots, wax jackets and tweed caps. There was also a wide array of home and garden areas and we saw some wonderful 'hobbit' style garden buildings that were amazing but wayyyy out of our budget! As with all country fairs there was the artisan products, unique homewares, handmade candles and stationery and best of all homegrown, authentic food products. There were treats galore and we picked up some round cakes, some amazing brownies and Dan treated himself to some orange and whiskey marmalade. You are well catered for if you come here to shop. There was a lot of choice.
We mainly went for the food shopping but there were plenty of other things going off from typical country pursuits such as clay pigeon shooting to shows and displays by motorcycle groups, horse riders and dog agility groups. There was also a cookery theatre where famous chefs demonstrated some of their skills. I was amazingly excited to discover that actual Mary Berry was there demonstrating and book signing. I also glimpsed Alan Titchmarsh who looked like a very cheerful and friendly fella!
|Sorry for terrible quality- had to act quickly due to rain!|
There were plenty of activities to keep little ones entertained including fairground rides, mini dodgems and enough candy floss and sweet stalls to keep them awake for a month. My favourite display was the birds of prey. There were some beautiful, elegant creatures to admire.
At events like this I always gravitate towards giant paella pans. I think it stems from my love of the Es Cana Hippie market in Ibiza but if that's not your thing then there is plenty of other choice for lunch. Everything from the traditional bacon butty to the more interesting ostrich burger. There is food for all tastes and of course you are welcome to take a picnic if the weather's on your side!
We spent a good few hours walking around the Chatsworth Country Fair and we would have spent quite a few more if it hadn't been so wet. The weather definitely impacted on our enjoyment of the day but we got to eat some delicious street food, dream about things for our home that we could never afford and take home some delicious goodies so all in all it was a great day out!
Thanks for reading and special thanks to Jen at shegetsaround.co.uk for hosting the giveaway in which I won the prize.