Its time to shout “happy birthday” as the family team at Salts Farm celebrate next Wednesday (with birthday cake and a prize for one lucky customer) their highly successful farm shop which has been trading for ten years. An amazing achievement particularly in the current climate and through the Covid-19 pandemic the team have carried on serving the community with some of the freshest and tastiest produce available.
Salts Farm Shop was set up by Peter and Judith Anthony and opened its doors in September 2010 on what was then Judith’s family farm. Judith’s sister Anne joined them to help run it and recently Peter and Judith’s son Matthew has also joined the team, a truly family affair.
The shop was born out of an idea to create a unit stocked with as much local produce as possible, and many of the products on sale are sourced from suppliers within a few miles with the meat coming not only from the family farm (when in season) but also from Park Farm Butchers in Hawkhurst – all of it free range.
Their aim is to provide good quality everyday essentials as well as some of those little luxury treats we all need in life, particularly during these trying times, and their staff offer a welcoming and friendly environment with staff who are passionate and knowledgeable about quality local produce.
Admittedly I hadn’t been to the farm shop for a while but this week I did and was met with a very enthusiastic and friendly welcome from Matthew, wearing a face visor, who explained to me how the safety measures which were in place worked.
At the entrance there were ample supplies of hand sanitiser and directional arrows took you in one direction around the display shelving to the till which was behind Perspex screening. There were clear signs and explanatory notices where needed, and I must say I felt totally at ease and safe in the knowledge that the safety of customers and staff was being taken very seriously, and I would feel very happy to come back again.
Matthew was apologetic for the shortage of stock, the explanation being that they had sold out of much of what had been available, and new supplies were being delivered imminently, but from what I witnessed there was a huge range of stock to cover most eventualities. It’s worth noting that free range meat is delivered to the shop each Monday and Thursday and with a little prior notice your exact requirements can be met.
In normal times there would be a small indoor café area serving fantastic Illy coffee as well as a variety of teas, but unfortunately this is currently closed due to the Covid-19 crisis. However if you are in need of a little refreshment filled rolls are available to eat in or take away, with bacon definitely the most popular, or maybe you fancy a cream tea or slice of locally made sponge cake?
The shop is easy to find, coming from Rye on New Road (A259) continue straight ahead for just under a mile and you will see the entrance on your left, just before the right hand turning, signposted to Camber.
Opening times are currently 10am until 5pm seven days a week and there is also an outdoor café and take away service open 7 days a week, from 10am until 4:30pm each day.
Salts Farm Shop, East Guldeford, Rye, East Sussex,TN31 7PA. Tel: 01797 226540, www.saltsfarmshop.co.uk
Image Credits: Nick Forman .