Flourishing in Faversham

Julie Davies is a florist who hosts flower arranging workshops at a variety of pop up venues in East Kent. She lives in the market town of Faversham with her husband and daughter.  

Faversham is the greatest place.  I moved here in 1994 after a chance discovery of the open air swimming pool, while my usual haunt was out of action.  I picked up a copy of the local paper and as I drove home thought “I’m going to move there one day” and I did!

VLUU P1200  / Samsung P1200The town sits on a creek on the edge of North Kent Downs and is close to the beautiful Kent coast.  It’s still one of the most intact mediaeval towns in south east England and has an interesting history; there are Roman remains; King Stephen, grandson of William the Conqueror is buried here; the town council has an original Magna Carta and it was the most important port in North Kent.

Faversham is small enough to make friends easily but large enough to support a wide range of venues and activities. As well as the Royal Cinema there’s a market three times a week, as well as the Best in Faversham market on the first Saturday of the month and an antiques market on the first Sunday each month. The town is also home to Britain’s oldest brewer Shepherd Neame and celebrates the heritage of the hop industry at the annual Hop Festival.

VLUU P1200  / Samsung P1200As a family we have worn a well-trodden path from our house into the town centre.  Faversham has lots of lanes and paths and if you’re imaginative in your route you barely need to mix with the traffic to get from one side of town to the other.  Nearly every Saturday morning you’ll find us walking along the stream and into town.  I’m always on the look out for vases and containers for my workshops so we trawl the charity shops, then it’s up to the Guildhall to look around the market.  More often than not we stop to chat to friends and call into one of the many cafes like Jittermugs.  Sitting street-side in the sunshine we often feel we’re on holiday.

front_220711_3314webWe might call into the gallery at Creek Creative (another fabulous coffee stop) to check out the latest art exhibition or take refuge in the Parish Church – we’ve been known to picnic in the graveyard. Close by, the Abbey Physic Garden is well worth a visit. Within the walled garden you get secret views out to the back of the houses in Abbey Street.  We always seem to pick up an idea to use in our garden and there’s the added bonus of some pond dipping thrown in.

Walking to the end of Abbey Street takes you to the barges moored at Standard Quay and from there you can walk through Iron Wharf Boat Yard and onto the marshes.

VLUU P1200  / Samsung P1200

P1050963Keep walking (or cycling) and you’ll reach the Sportsman at Seasalter. VLUU P1200  / Samsung P1200  I love the huge skies and what others might think of as bleak countryside. It’s such a contrast to historic Faversham and the surrounding lush countryside to the south with its orchards and hopfields.

Travelling further along the coast another favourite place is the tiny tea shop at Walden’s Caravan Park.  It’s an absolute delight.  Stopping there is always a tough choice though because it means forsaking the magnificent Whitstable tea gardens opposite the castle, where you can enjoy your tea with a sea view.

Julie’s next workshop takes place at Creek Creative in Faversham on Tuesday 1st July. Creek Creative celebrates its 5th birthday on the same day.

20140316-701_6266Faversham Open Houses  provide the opportunity to gain special access to interesting properties and takes place on 5/12/19th July.

On the week-end of 30/31 August the Faversham Hop Festival celebrates its 25th anniversary .

Faversham’s Magna Carta will be displayed as the centrepiece of the touring exhibition ‘Magna Carta Rediscovered’ which will launch in Faversham in May 2015.

Trains link Faversham to London (St Pancras, Victoria or Charing Cross) in just over an hour, and you can change at Ebbsfleet International for Paris and rest of Europe.

 

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Sign up to our mailing list.


Follow me on Twitter