Fladbury: Home Away From Home
Fladbury was just what we needed and we didn’t know it. To be connected to a community, the English countryside, relaying nostalgic memories from childhood. It was everything.
And moreover, it all felt very timely to be able to stay in a real home again.
My good friend from growing up, Lucy, currently lives in London.
However, her mother, Simone, lives in Fladbury, an English village in Worcestershire.
Will and I took an easy two hour train ride from London to Evesham, the closest nearby town. When Lucy and Simone picked us up from the train station, a series of emotions washed over me once we embraced. Mostly, the sheer comfort of familiarity.
And thus, upon arriving in Fladbury, Will and I both experienced a visceral reaction.
We instantaneously felt like we could make a home here.
There’s one village pub, the Anchor Inn in the middle of town.
It’s the central place for everyone nearby to congregate.
The strong sense of community felt tangible, and it’s not only because everyone knows each other.
The Friends of Fladbury helps facilitate community events and fundraising projects. Although it’s conducted through the Parish Council, it’s not necessarily religious by nature.
After the brief tour and we toasted to our reunion, Simone welcomed us with a warming vegetarian shepherd’s pie right out of the oven. We proceeded to go for the first of many walks with their sweet pup, Remy.
Fladbury is located on the banks of the River Avon.
As a self-proclaimed non-dog person, I’ll admit Remy could turn me.
We walked by the Fladbury Mill, which dates back to the 18th century.
Simone explained it’s uniquely constructed from both brick and timber.
Will kept on saying that when we were walking in Hampi, this very moment is what he was envisioning.
Long, quiet, brisk walks in the English countryside. Open air. Winding lanes. This was it.
The only thing we needed now was a draught from the pub.
Naturally, Remy was invited as well.
When we got back to their place, I did something I haven’t indulged in all year: baking homemade cookies! And merely navigating a well stocked kitchen again completely warmed my heart.
The following morning, we woke up to a crisp autumn day, with birds literally chirping out of our window. Couldn’t make it up.
We made our way downstairs to Simone and Lucy preparing breakfast.
But first, we needed a few more eggs, so Will and I said we’d pop next door to the local butcher, Fladbury Pies.
It was misting out, so we borrowed some rain coats. Will’s was floral and fabulous. Once we walked in, it was clear it was quite a masculine operation. When we asked if they made any fruit pies, the answer was a firm no. Vegetarian pies? An eye roll. Needless to say, we left with only eggs and cheese, and vowed not to make a reappearance.
On the docket that day was some more walks through corn fields.
And some picturesque autumnal pathways.
Relaxing with some wine and cheese, while watching my new obsession—The Great British Baking Show.
But for me, the highlight was my absolute favorite fall activity.
Apple picking! It’s something I was seriously bummed to miss out on this year.
Knowing I could travel and still go apple picking, kinda meant that there’s truly no need to ever return home.
Simone belongs to the community orchard, and there was an organized apple picking event that afternoon.
After, we were treated to warm tea and an array of homemade, traditional flapjacks. They resemble a British version of granola bar, made with oats, butter, and golden syrup.
On our last full day, I practically begged to make lunch, since being in the kitchen completely filled my soul.
It was a riff on the Mediterranean pasta I made one night for dinner in Crete. Man, I really miss cooking.
After, we drove to Pershore to walk along a different park of the River Avon.
Passed fields of cows.
Who could not possibly be more endearing.
Long chats, and a bit of sun was such a lovely way to conclude our visit.
We got back late, and it was difficult not to appreciate the sunset.
Will decided he could most definitely live in a community oriented place like Fladbury.
And perhaps most notably, we finished the complete first season of The Great British Baking Show.
The weekend was filled with so much and so little at the same time. Long walks, deep chats, home cooking.
It was unclear if it was Fladbury itself, or Simone and Lucy’s inclusive hospitality that was so inspiring. However, the weekend reinvigorated us for the English leg of our trip.