Posts Tagged 'Fishermans Friends'

Alex Polizzi – The Fixer….Clotted Cream in a Pasty?

Well, tonight we were thrilled to happen upon a programme set in Cornwall; Alex Polizzi – The Fixer. The premise of the programme is Alex’s one woman campaign to rescue local family businesses.  You may have seen her on The Hotel Inspector and she is part of the famous hoteliers the Forte family. Her Mother owns the fabulous Hotel Tresanton in St Mawes on the South Cornwall coast. Something I didn’t know until this programme is that she owns her own wholesale bakery who supply to Selfridges & Fortum & Mason amongst many top restaurants. So she has a great background which has given her the experience needed to help Choughs Bakery in Padstow – business and bread!

A great programme which really shows the benefits and perhaps the pitfalls of working with your family. Alex worked with the Eade family who have been running a bakery on the harbour at Padstow for the last 30 years. The shop had a new look and she helped them diversify to help them through the lean winter months. Something I’m sure a lot of Cornish businesses have problems with. People shouldn’t only view Cornwall as a summer destination, there’s nothing better than a walk on a Cornish beach when the winds blowing a hooley with a pasty in your hand.

This programme offered a great glimpse of lovely Cornwall while we’re up in Oxfordshire in the snow. There was also an all too brief view of our favourite Yarnigoats (Men from Port Issac) The Fisherman’s Friends who made the perilous journey from Port Isaac to Padstow to sing for the Town Crows (people from Padstow) at the ‘Celebration of the Cornish Pasty’ Do you think they may have been paid in pasties?

One of their new ideas is pasties by post. If you fancy a taste of the home county shipped to your door or even a Valentines pasty check out their website here The Chough Bakery or if you fancy trying to make one yourself check out Mark’s Mum on You Tube

If you missed this programme you may want to watch it on BBC IPlayer here Alex Polizzi – The Fixer – Episode 2 The Chough Bakery It’s definitely worth a look if only for their secret pasty  ingredient…..Cornish Clotted Cream!! I love the way recipes get handed down in families. Apparently their grandmother made her own clotted cream and always added a dollop to the veg and meat in her pasties.

Also, if you want any more news on the lovely Fisherman’s Friends check out their website here Port Isaac’s Fisherman’s Friends They’re going on tour!!

Cornwall with Caroline Quentin ITV – Episode Two

The second episode last night disappointedly showed the same people from the first episode and a few others with gig rowing later in the program. Come on ITV, there is so much more talent in Cornwall than a vineyard, a holiday home letting company, and a Cornish fisherwoman who describes Londoners as foreigners. I’m Cornish but I don’t have the ignorance to describe people from outside the country as foreigners. They provide an economy for the South West, eat the fish we catch and deserve some respect. I’m afraid that lady just showed herself up last night.

The show has got a bit of a grilling from many a viewer. Read some of the comments here on This Is Cornwall

Now I have that off my chest lets look at what other talent is in Cornwall in the hope that ITV have these covered in later episodes.

1. Eden Project – ok most people have heard of this but it’s an incredible project and a real success story for the country. It should be on everyone’s ‘To Do’ list so a little publicity for the Eden project would go a long way for the coming season.

2. Artists in Cornwall – The county is a haven for artists with so much amazing talent. How about a visit to the Tate St Ives or visit some local artists studios and find out what inspires them. Check out these guys

Kurt Jackson

Benjamin Warner

Amanda Hoskin

3. The Lost Gardens of Heligan – one of my favourite places in the county – surely Caroline you have visited that in your 8 episode series on Cornwall.

4. Mining – Cornwall’s heritage, the mine stacks dotted around the Cornish coast, the scarred landscapes from the mines that have now closed down. There are still some mines you can go down, especially if you are a national television crew. Interviews with miners, how it was to work down the mines? Check out Geevor Tin Mine here

5. The RNLI – Go out on a boat Caroline with the crew of one of the lifeboats, show people what a good charity it is and what a worthwhile charity it is to support.

6. The Minack Theatre – Spectacular open air theatre on the cliff edge at Porthcurno – An amazing story about an incredible lady Rowena Cade who constructed the theatre herself.

7. Port IsaacThe fisherman’s friends and The Filming of Doc Martin would make an interesting story on how a fishing village has diversified in the modern age.

8. Food? Pasties –  Visit Ann’s Pasties on the Lizard. Clotted Cream – Visit Roddas and see how cream is made. Cornish Cheeses – we have just won World Cheese Awards Champion Cheese 2010 – how about featuring that?

9. The rugged coastline, surfing, the beaches, the quality of the water – tourism?

10. Cornwall’s  mysterious past, smuggling, ancient settlements, stone circles, myths and legends.

So ITV, two down and six episodes to go.  Lets have something a bit more interesting and less of a sales pitch for a few companies please.

For those interesting in the Gig Rowing I will do a separate post later in the year but for now check out the Cornish Pilot Gig Association website here.

Port Isaac’s Fisherman’s Friends – Sailing at Eight Bells

Becky has been reading the Fisherman’s Friends book given to her recently by friends for her Birthday. Here is her book review!

Some of you may of heard of this group of friends (and some of them are indeed fishermen) from Port Isaac on the north coast not far from Padstow. They have been singing together each Friday evening on the Platt in the middle of the village at (about) 8pm, hence the books title – sailing at eight bells. Some of you may even have been privileged enough to see them singing in person, though I’ve heard it can be standing room only since they took the world by storm.

This fantastic book tells the truly engaging story of ten Cornishmen who have been singing together for years but have only recently found national and international success. It weaves together the lives of all ten members and their lives growing up in a small coastal fishing village. It also records how their lives changed when a record producer heard their dulcet tones and signed them to a major record label. The thing I most loved is the story of the 11th character in this book, Port Isaac itself. Wonderful to hear the history of such a familiar village, not exactly on the frontline when it comes to international or come to that international news but the really interesting stuff of day to day life.

Particularly interesting to hear how life has changed in the village over the years. Very familiar to me growing up in a village in Wiltshire was the story how as new houses were built on the outskirts the local people decided to move from the dark damp cottages into the light, warm new builds. Unfortunately in Port Isaac that has meant that many of the cottages have been purchased as holiday cottages rendering the village almost empty during the winter months. From reading the book though, it is clear to see that Port Isaac has managed to retain a fabulous community despite the onslaught of television crews – only sometimes there to film the FF’s – and Emmets

I really enjoyed the ‘information’ sections within the book too. Who new (well, apart from locals!) that Padstow people call Port Isaac people Town Crows and in return the Port Isaac people are called Yarnigoats? Great recipes are included for Hevva Cake and Pasties. In a county where everyone’s Mum’s have a slightly different recipe for the county’s famous dishes these are a slight variations on the recipes we have posted – just to confuse!

This is a fabulous book, I can’t remember the last book I read that made me laugh out loud so much. I would highly recommend it to anyone who loves Cornwall and if you love the Fishermen’s Friends why haven’t you bought it already?

I just wish that we had discovered this Cornish buoy band before everyone else. We may have been able to book them for our wedding in Cornwall next year. Somehow I’m sure we can’t compete with Glastonbury, for one Beyonce is definitely not appearing in St Mawes next year!!

If you love the Fisherman’s Friends don’t forget to check out their website follow them on Facebook, Twitter and follow their blog too, and if you are visiting Port Isaac you must go to the Fish counter near the Platt to sample some of their catch!