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A TiYK love-in at Yeo Valley HQ - food, friends and Friesians
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Sunday, August 11, 2013
By Katharine

This year I joined the team at This is Your Kingdom - a website full of recommendations for lovely things to see and do.  And whilst I've got to know fellow writers chatting online, and by reading their fascinating and often beautiful blogs, I can't tell you how brilliant it was to meet many of them in person last week.  The funny thing about it was that I think we could all have been friends - and I suppose that's what This is Your Kingdom has done, brought together lots of people like me, dotted about the country, in all walks of life, but drawn together by a love of the good things in life and an instinct to create.  

Yeo Valley HQ played host for this inaugural love-in and at the heart of the Mead's business the same values of family and creativity run through everything they do too.  In the spirit of welcoming friends to a family home we were spoilt rotten with demos from Head Chef Jaime in the new HQ kitchen and cafe overlooking the lush green valley and lake, a tour of the fabulous meeting rooms for hire at HQ, a fantastic lunch with fresh produce from the farm and a tour of the 6 acre Yeo Valley Organic Gardens around the farmhouse which has been lovingly transformed into a series of horticultural 'experiences' from vegetables and cut flower gardens to fields of grasses and meadows - just beautiful and awe-inspiring!

What I loved most of all was the character of the place - Sarah searched long and hard for practically all the upcycled, vintage and salvaged pieces which surround you. The demo ktichen at HQ is made up of old display cabinets and shop counters, there's brilliant industrial lighting and clever upcycling of old kitchen utensils and equipment. Vintage china and knick-knacks adorn the tea room and it's fun too, a sense of humour prevails.  

Here are some of my snaps...

Above: Jaime the Chef give us a great demo.  But just look at the industrial shelving and all that lovely old glass!

Above, secret pathways through tall grasses, and below, Rebecca and Hannah, co-founders of This is Your Kingdom

Colourful tearoom - full of flowers from the garden, vintage china and GNOMES.

 

The Organic Garden and tearoom is open to the public several days a week and so you can see it all for yourself but if you'd like to pour over beautiful photographic portraits of the food, farm and friendly faces then check out the Yeo Valley Farmhouse Cookbook - it's wonderful.  

Lovely to meet all you fellow TiYK-ers!  Time for a nice brew.

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2 Comments
Rachel - Aw, wasn't it a fun day?! Wonderful to re-live it with your beautiful photography. Here's to next time! R x
Laura - It was lovely to meet you too, Katharine. Such gorgeous photos. You have really captured the day ! Hope to see you again sometime soon x