This morning I wandered over to Chelsea Town Hall as they have a vintage fashion fair there every few months, but more interestingly – also have a tea room which serves proper English tea and scones (or sandwiches), and a real gramophone playing suitable music.

Unlike the painfully expensive teas you can get in a posh restaurant, these come out at a much more affordable price. A very large pot of tea between two and sandwiches came out at under a tenner.

There is a £4 entry fee into the fair though – although we spent quite a while wandering round that as well, so not a bad investment. They hand out rather nice canvas bags for free as well – ostensibly for shopping with, but it turned out be useful later on.

As it happens, I am randomly hunting for a good 1940s/50s outfit for a heritage tube train run of the 1938 stock due later this year – and I am determined to go in style this time!

Next vintage fashion fair is on 22ndMarch – although there is a vintage domestic furnishing fair on the 8th as well (i’ll be at the Acton Depot tube museum on that date though).

Coming back home though, due to woes on the Underground, I decided to walk over the bridge at Waterloo.

Big mistake – for some evil cur has put a Farmers Market by the South Bank Centre!

A slice of venison pie sir? yes please – Oh, that cheese tastes nice, hmmm, nice malty bread loaves, ahh, game pies by the dozen! I need some mustard as well – but am OK for chutney at the moment thanks.

Fortunatly, the honey wasn’t local.  I am not a slavish follower of the food miles myth, as it is largely a myth – except for honey.

There is a thought that honey made from pollen where you live is helpfull at priming the body for the onset of hayfever season, so I do endevour to stick to London produced honey as much as is reasonably possible.

I still sneeze here, there and everywhere during the summer though – so I am not totally convinced about the local pollen theory.

I shall now have to avoid the South Bank on Sundays – it’s getting to the point that I daren’t go out at weekends for fear of running into a farmers market and sending my wallet into shudders of terror at what I am about to do to the bank ballance.


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  1. Food miles a myth? R..i..g..h..t… There were some very nice bunches of flowers in the supermarket today. Grown in Kenya (where the locals should be growing food to eat) which had then been airfrieghted to the UK. They were retailing at £4 a bunch, (32 and a bit pence a stem). So what’s the profit margin for the farmer on 32 and a bit pence, I wonder, after Sainsbobs have taken their share? And the enviromental cost to the planet of a large aircraft flying all those thousands of miles just to bring pretty flowers to the UK?

    There were also mange tout from Guatemala, pomegranates from Israel….

  2. IanVisits says:

    I’ll refer to you a posting I wrote a while back – The myth about Food Miles

    And to go to your Kenyan example – here are the facts:

    Roses produced in the Netherlands and transported to Britain cause 35,000 kg of carbon emissions per 12,000 stems, against 600 kg of carbon emissions per 12,000 stems of Kenyan roses.

    Now, as I have argued in the past, returning to a more seasonal lifestyle would be best – but while people want bunches of flowers in February, the ones from Kenya are vastly – yes, vastly – better than locally grown flowers in environmental terms.

  3. Yep, proof positive that you can bend statistics to prove anything you want.

  4. petoskystone says:

    when i buy locally it is to support the local farmer, not because of carbon concern. the farmer’s market sounded great—ours don’t start for another few months.

  5. Rob says:

    Think you wandered into the Slow Food market on the South Bank. It’s only there on high days and holidays (valentines day, xmas, easter..) so you should be free to visit at other times and not feel guilt-tripped into buying £3.50 tomatoes.

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