Viewers to the Village SOS TV programme often ask us if the project is still running – the lasting impression seems to be that the Cookery School is on its last legs! Nothing could be further from the truth- the need to introduce a sense of “jeopardy” into the programme has obscured the really great news of our success. (And a lot has happened since filming finished 8 months ago!)
We had a massive record sales month at Tideswell School of Food after the programme was broadcast in the UK in September, and beat figure that handsomely in December. Our customers are giving us great feedback and many are returning for second and third visits. We estimate we’ve had more than 1,000 visitors and customers since we opened a year ago. We now employ 10 people, all but one from the village, and we are developing new cookery and brewing courses and corporate packages all the time. As far as the wider impact of the project is concerned, we know from our recent survey that 22% more villagers are shopping locally, and pretty much all the retailers in the Tideswell Made scheme report growing sales over the last year. One new food retailer and one new non-food retailer has opened and they are trading successfully. 2012 will be a challenging year from the whole economy, and we know we have more to do in areas like encouraging more community involvement from every part of the village, but we are feeling pretty good about the future here in Tideswell.
You can follow us on Twitter @tideswellfood @tastetideswell and @nicoltim
Good morning Australia… if you’d like to talk to Pete, Phil or Penny from Penny’s Pud’s we’re live on Facebook now.
Here’s the link direct to the School of Food’s Facebook page.
The Village SOS programme featuring Taste Tideswell the the Tideswell School of Food is being broadcast in Australia. Going out on the LifeStyle TV Channel. Pete, Phil and Penny from Penny’s Puds will be talking after the programme with Australian viewers on Facebook.
To see the Cookery Courses on offer at The Tideswell School of Food please click the link.
After a busy week, the Taste Tideswell website had a bit of a snooze today. Apologies for those who couldn’t get on earlier. All working now.
Thanks to all the people from far and wide who travelled to Tideswell this weekend to meet the faces behind the Village SOS TV programme.
Our very own “self-styled marketing man”, Tim, was on tour guide duty at the School of Food; Carol and her team at Tindalls baked throughout the weekend; the village pubs – Horse and Jockey, Star, Anchor and George served up countless meals; and the Cherry Tree, Peaches, and Vanilla Kitchen cafe were on hand to serve scrummy Tideswell Made food. Litton Larder’s Penny’s Puds were flying off the shelves at the Peak District Dairy Shop and Chatsworth Farm Shop.
We had visitors from Devon, Sunderland, Lancashire, London, as well as people from slightly closer to home. All were inspired with what they saw – a community coming together around food!
Wondering what all the fuss is about? Why not watch the Village SOS episode here on i-Player: http://t.co/x2x3C6p
Has anyone seen Carol?
We all react to fame in different ways and Carol from Tindalls, which featured in the BBC1 programme, decided to disguise herself. Visitors to the shop yesterday were greeted with a long, blonde-haired Carol. On her lapel was badge exclaiming “I’m not Carol!” That didn’t fool the hundreds of visitors to the shop though and the shop, along with the others in the village did a roaring trade.
Scores of visitors to Tideswell today have resulted in some shops selling out! Tindalls, who feature on last night’s BBC! Village SOS programme, have been baking all day (Carol is the one wearing the wig and dark glasses!) and the Cherry Tree, Tideswell’s newest food shop, have been running out too. Visitors to the School of Food say that some of the pubs have run out of food too.
Penny Ward, of Litton Larder, the Queen of the Sticky Toffee Puds, has been busy making 150 STP’s in the School’s commercial kitchen and they’re flying out of the Peak Dairy shop.
We’re expecting similar numbers in the village tomorrow and over the weekend, so traders, stock up now and visitors, bring your pennies.
Online bookings, phone calls and personal visits a-plenty today at the Tideswell School of Food. There are over 500 visits per hour to the school’s website, and the phones have been red hot all day.
Apologies to those who tried to log on last night, despite doing our level best, with the help of Vince and colleagues at Twentyhost, the sheer volume of hits were too much at times. (For the technical amongst you, a normal server load is around one or two. At six, the server is beginning to sweat, we had times last night when the server load hit 250!)
We’re open for tours (and sales of course) tomorrow and over the weekend, so do drop in and say hello.
What a tremendous reaction to tonight’s broadcast. The twittersphere, text messages and emails have been buzzing. Apologies to all who tried to log on to this web site and the Tideswell School of Food, we did our best but the shear volume beat us!
Take a look now the tidal wave has decreased a bit….
Tours of the School tomorrow, Friday, Saturday and Sunday – come and find out more.