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New Cadland Estate farm shop keeping locals fed

Fiona Drummond, the owner of Cadland Estate in Fawley
Fiona Drummond, the owner of Cadland Estate in Fawley

SUMPTUOUS sausages made from game reared on a New Forest estate are one of the offerings at its newly created farm shop.

The venison used is of the highest quality and can also be enjoyed in the form of steaks, joints and shanks.

Normally it would be sold at places like farmers’ markets but now anyone can sample it, thanks to Fiona Drummond – owner of Cadland Estate in Fawley along with her husband Aldred – who set the shop up literally overnight.

She said: “At the moment many of the places the game was supplied to are not open because of the lockdown.

“I did not want to see it go to waste so it was one of the reasons I created the shop.”

One of the other products which comes direct from the estate are British blooms that Fiona grows in a newly-created garden.

She said: “The plan was to offer a cut-and-come-again service for visitors but that has been postponed. Instead people can now buy them at the shop.”

Fiona said she had been planning for some time to set up the shop and was “kicked into starting it when the lockdown happened”.

She said: “I literally created it overnight in my garage about three weeks ago. I wanted to offer people the kind of quality produce we enjoy from the estate’s kitchen garden.

“I sought out local providers of fruit, veg, dairy and fish to ensure everything is of the finest quality and also involves almost zero food miles.

“Some of these producers have seen their customer supply completely stop, so the shop has also given them a way of being able to keep going.”

“The result is the kind of fruit and veg many remember from their childhood – when tomatoes, carrots and apples tasted as good as they looked.”

Humble beginnings in Fiona's garage
Humble beginnings in Fiona's garage

The game and fish are as fresh as they could be, coming from the estate and the waters it overlooks.

Aware of the egg shortage, Fiona also rescued some battery hens to boost her home farm flock. She said: “They are now happily enjoying grass-fed healthy freedom.”

The response to Fiona’s creation of the kitchen shop has been dramatic, she said. “People call us and cry – they are so happy and overwhelmed with the quality and what has come to their door-step, when food and produce sourcing is so uncertain and times are so desperately lonely.”

She added: “It has been a great thing and given me a lot of joy to be able to support the community at this time.

“It has been a lifeline for some and I hope that it paves the way for providing sustainable change going forward but, like everybody else, we are in a wait-and-see situation.”

The farm shop is offering collection every Thursday, or a delivery service for people living within 13 miles of the estate at a charge of £6. Orders have to be submitted 48 hours before the collection and delivery date.

Among the items on offer are a large fruit and veg box for £40, or a smaller one with either veg or fruit for £27. Organic milk is £1.50 a litre while a loaf of Hoxton sourdough is £4.50.

Game sausages with apricot and calvados are priced at £6.50 for six. There are also

venison burgers and venison rump steak which is £12.50 for 500g.

Chalk stream trout is £6.50 for two fillets, and a handmade Solent fish pie for two to three people is £7.50.

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