First things first, to all guests who were booked to visit over the next few weeks, we are so sorry you won’t be joining us just yet – and you should already have heard from members of the team by now. We have rescheduled all of the dates for the events that cannot go ahead in November and I hope we will see you at one of these very soon.
One small silver lining in these strange times is that because of our new safety protocols, there are fewer of you whose events have been cancelled this time around. Since we reopened in the summer we have reduced the numbers on all our events to keep everyone at a safe distance. On our cookery courses in particular, this has led to fantastic feedback from both our guests and tutors. Everyone appreciates having their own dedicated station in the cook school, and the extra attention of our brilliant teaching team. So we have decided to keep all our courses at these reduced numbers for the foreseeable future.
Another lesson learned this year is how much people value good food during lockdown. In the spring we had a weekly Supper Club for the local people of Axminster and nearby villages and this time round we have gone further. I’m pleased to say that we will be serving top-notch takeaway meals five days a week from Axminster Kitchen with our new River Cottage Lockdown Kitchen Club. There will be curry nights, supper clubs and a comforting Sunday lunch available to collect and reheat at home. You can find out more HERE.
One thing that feels very serendipitous is that we launched our new River Cottage Diploma and programme of online courses a few weeks back. It’s brilliant that even more of you will be able to 'experience' River Cottage and learn some fantastic cooking skills with me and our fantastic tutors. Put in the context of our mission statement, with River Cottage you will learn to grow, source and cook food in ways that will enhance your life, increase your wellbeing and connect you more closely to the natural, sustainable and ethical sources of food. Surely that’s the perfect lockdown project - even if I do say so myself! FIND OUT MORE.
And if you still have your sights set on a visit River Cottage in real life (or IRL as my children would text on their phones) then I'm thrilled to announce that we have released a brilliant new programme of River Cottage Cookery Courses for 2021. These new courses represent the ultimate collection that have been fine-tuned over nearly two decades of River Cottage teaching. There are all the timeless classics one would expect, covering topics such as bread, fish and pastry, and a few new ones that reflect the gathering excitement around topics such as fermentation, sourdough and cooking with spices. I'll even be heading into the cookery school myself, and I'm hugely looking forward to teaching a morning of Veg cookery on the new River Cottage Four Day course.
The team and I have been working hard getting these courses ready for the past few months. Of course I didn’t expect that we would be launching in lockdown, but in these strange and challenging circumstances, it feels like a brilliant opportunity to get something in the diary to look forward to, either to treat yourself, or as a gift for family and friends. Or both! BROWSE COURSES.
So we very much hope to see you in the coming weeks and into the new year. In the meantime, I hope you and your loved ones remain safe and well. We will be doing all we can to help keep you well-fed and in touch with all the River Cottage activities both on and off-line. As ever, please do keep an eye on our social media where we will be regularly sharing recipes and information.
Fingers crossed my email next month will be in healthier and happier times.