Allotment Planning

Park Lane Acquisition aka Our Allotment

We applied for an allotment in November expecting to wait yonks for one but lo and behold we were allocated one on 4th December 2015. I will be posting pics from our challenge to get this allotment up and running and actually harvesting fruit, veg and flowers for us to eat, pick and pickle.

Choosing the plot

Choosing our plot – 33a. There are established fruit trees and bushes in the Heath Robinson cage, no idea what they all are yet. Will have to wait and see. Our neighbour is Clem (Fandango) who is a bit of an allotment ace by all accounts!

Eddie the site manager

Site manager Eddie, quite a character and he had his eyes on the asparagus plants, asked if he could snaffle them. We feel that this may well be a good first bribe…he seems to like us, for now!

Allotment planning starts and thanks to Number one son for our Christmas present, an allotment book…spot on!

Clearance of dump

This lot needed removing.

Getting stuck in

The Baron getting stuck in.

Globe artichokes

Globe artichokes found underneath a pile of rubbish. Bonus!

Nearly gone

Nearly all gone, not a bad couple of hours work. This area will be our first beds in next to no time.
That’s all folks, until the next exciting installment!

Bowls of Soul Rolling into Town?

Wagamama, the international Japanese canteen, has made planning applications on the site of the Edward Dean kitchen & bathroom showroom.

Will the chain “inspired by fast-paced, japanese ramen bars and a celebration of asian food…set out to create a unique way of eating. bringing the fresh, nourishing, flavours of asia to all”, be a good fit for Reigate?

Earlier in the year Reigate greeted Bill’s to Bell Street. There were murmurs that maybe it was one large restaurant too many and could it sustain itself in such a small market town? This appears to be unfounded and Bill’s seems to be a very happy new incumbent on the restaurant scene in Reigate. Will another venue though, with a proposal of 142 covers, be too much or will it’s addition bring more people into the centre of Reigate?

So, what will Wagamama bring to the town should their applications be successful? The restaurant appears to have a number of local fans judging by the excitement it generated each time it was mooted it ‘may’ be coming to town. For those ramen and katsu lovers, their dream appears to be coming true. Such a restaurant with it’s canteen style is also very popular with young adults, places of which for them to frequent is pretty limited in Reigate.

There is already an establishment in town with Japanese and Korean favourites on the menu. I am not sure how popular Miso is with local foodie and restaurant goers but being only a year old this weekend, they may feel this proposed new opening a little. Though by the looks of their new twitter account @MISObar_Lounge, they seem to have morphed into a bar & lounge “Dance floor is available between 10pm to 12am at Miso Restaurant

Being pretty much adjacent to the Everyman cinema must have been a bit of a draw for Wagamama given the opportunity to tempt people for a quick bite before luxuriating in the comfy sofas with a glass of wine or a beer.

You’ve got to admit it Reigate’s position on the cool-o-meter is slowly climbing. People from outside of town come and visit due to Reigate’s unique independent shops, cool events and great restaurants. Granted I would rather have seen an independent showing an interest in such a prime spot, however, we should support those who come in and invest in the town.

Should you wish to support or object to the change of use application and look at the full plans, you can view them and comment here

Proposed Bell Street Frontage


Beefy Balls & Gunpowder Mustard

With Reigate town centre adorned with the flag of St. George, it seemed only apt to put on a bit of a show to celebrate too. So Reigate Street Eats filled Tunnel Road with fantastic street food.

Dogtown London was there with his English banger and gunpowder mustard which he is showcasing this week at the first heat of the British Street Food Awards in Oxford this weekend. It really was mustard to ‘blow your head off’. Of course top marks as always go to the chilli-cheese dog, a frank, topped with six-hour beef and bone marrow chilli, beer cheese sauce, sour cream and coriander – irresistible.

First-timers in the tunnel Gourmet Grilled Cheese proved incredibly popular, there was a lot of stringy, dribbly CHEESE love around.

It can’t be St.George’s Day celebrations without pie & mash right? Too right, so MYPIE had rocked up in the tunnel in #RobertBedford his converted Bedford van with his ‘Epic Pies & Awesome Sides’.

Being the winner of the Great Sausage Roll Off 2014 it would have been rude not to have sausage rolls on the menu and his meaty black pudding & pork rolls were a huge hit. Oh and he rolled fresh scotch eggs too…!

LET THEM EAT CAKE….and they did. The lovely Vintage Dotty was there selling her scrumptious cakes, always such a difficult job which one to choose…oh, her coffee if fantastic too. Should you have withdrawal symptoms for Dotty’s cakes, nip along to Kingston Market Place where there is now a Vintage Dotty Tea Room…she’s conquering the world!

If all that wasn’t enough another Reigate virgin in the tunnel with their #tastyballsofmeat were the Meat Heads. Serving up hot & spicy beefy balls, lamb balls with feta, mint, yoghurt & olives plus English beefy balls with horseradish. If you failed to try these tasty balls, keep your eyes peeled for some exciting news and some balls not to be missed in Reigate…coming soon!

All this feasting was served up with a festive dollop of hanky waving and stick bashing by the Rampant Rooster Morris Dancers and the superb Callum McSherry with his amazing voice and fantastic folk music. Check him out, you won’t regret it.

Will Reigate Street Eats be doing it next year…by jove yes!

Rock and Robes

Rockin’ & Robin’ Around Reigate

In every town there are little gems of places and we’re lucky enough in Reigate to have an abundance of them. One of them is Rock & Robes.

Rock & Robes is a small independent clothes shop with accessories and gifts for both men & women.

Rock & Robes stock a fantastic mixture of current season clothing & footwear with brands such as Tamaris, Cara, and Tokyo Laundry together with a growing selection of  the Rock & Robes own label. What’s great is that there is also a small collection of pre-loved clothing ranging from Zara to Prada. These are all ‘as good as new’ and never more than 2 years old, which offers fabulous value for money with price tags around 70-90% less than their original price.

This eclectic selection provides a unique retail experience to suit everyone, mums, dads and teenagers alike and well worth that extra 2 minute walk from the center of town. This is a hidden gem in Reigate – something many of the local folk are missing out on and there aren’t many places in the area that cater the wardrobe requirements of different generations with an average price of £30. Bargain I’d say!

Also, Rock & Robes is apparently the only dress agency in the county that buys unwanted items up front. No waiting weeks or even months for payment, so if you’re looking to realise the value of what you’re not wearing in your wardrobe, that seems like a pretty good deal.

 So, who is the founder and Director of Rock & Robes, Lisa Martin? Lisa originally trained in London and has been involved in Retail for over 20 years including Simpsons, Selfridges, Fortnums and Fenwicks and her experience shows. She is qualified Colour and Image Consultant and is always on hand for some free stylist advice. She also hosts fashion workshops, shopping evenings, charity events etc – all with a glass of wine in your hand! I’m all for that!

Lisa ran the International Mail Order Department for Monsoon way before the present day on-line shopping phenomenon was ever dreamed of. All of us enjoy the convenience of browsing on line in the comfort of our own homes whilst still in our PJ’s, but I would suggest that there is nothing beats the experience of walking out of a ‘real’ shop clutching your recent purchase having been served by a ‘real’ person. Take a stroll up Church Street soon – you won’t regret it!

But of course if you do happen to want to peruse their fab clothes whilst in your PJ’s…you can do that too 

Happy shopping, #shoplocal and support your independents.

Take a peak inside the shop……..


Rock & Robes 

35 Church St, Reigate RH2 0AD

Tel: 01737 668386


Taste of Success

Reigate Easter Market

An order has been put in for the sun to shine on the Reigate Easter Market in Tunnel Road on Saturday 4th April.

From 11-3pm Tunnel Road will be filled with delicious food stalls and arts & crafts plus hot street food traders too.

Hopefully this will be the first of many Easter Markets in Tunnel Road that can become a tradition and just keep getting bigger and better.

Lots of local traders, come down and support them.

Hot cross buns, ice cream, artisan chocolate, homemade marshmallows and fudge; paella, slow cooked lamb ribs and freshly made ravioli and meatballs. What’s not to like?

See you there!


Reigate Easter Market- Tunnel Road 

Saturday 4th April 11am-3pm

Easter Poster-01










Sunday lunch set menu

Sunday Lunch Round Tony’s

Sunday roast is one of those dishes that we all have an expectation of and quite frankly the best Sunday roast is ours, so it’s always very difficult when choosing to dine out for this institution of a British dish.

So when chef Tony Tobin tweeted that there was availability on Sunday with a £21 fixed price 3 course menu, we thought, why not. Also, the fact that we hadn’t been to the butchers to buy our weekly joint of meat may have helped with the decision.

When you consider how much a Sunday roast is in pubs these days we thought that this was a bit of bargain and would try it out. We’ve eaten at Tony’s restaurant The Dining Room a fair few times and it’s always been a pleasure. Great food and a lovely relaxed informal atmosphere.

I’m not going to warble on about each dish, but just to say that it was all delicious and excellent quality, though my favourite was the light and fragrant saffron infused clam chowder with lemon oil and chives.

What I will say is, if you haven’t been to The Dining Room, give it go. It is not a stuffy, snooty, posh restaurant, it’s a restaurant that envelops you like a warm, gentle hug and is a credit to Tony who wanted his restaurant to make diners feel relaxed and comfortable.

You won’t keel over with the wine list either, there is a bottle for all tastes and budgets.

It’s worth giving Tony a follow on Twitter @ChefTonyTobin and on Facebook Tony Tobin at The Dining Room as there are often really good deals on offer.

Go on, give it a go and have lunch round Tony’s!


The Dining Room – 59a High Street Reigate Surrey RH2 9AE

Tel: 01737 226650


Tinc Popping Up in Reigate…Literally

“A colourful, creative world of extraordinary stationery, gadgets, clothing and accessories” is what Tinc are planning on bringing to Reigate.

Tinc are moving into the old Fat Face unit in the High Street, though not one of their usual stores as you would see it.

Their shop fit ‘proper’ won’t happen until January so they are launching a Tinc Pop Up shop using the existing fittings.

Opening their doors on Wednesday 10th December, Area Manager James Sawyer, said that Tinc was going to bring a “quirky design element of stationery and gifts to the High Street”.

A staunchly proud British company, Tinc have seen a rapid expansion since they opened their shop in Bath in 2011, boasting eight shops last year to an impressive nineteen this year.

James has invited everyone to pop in and say ‘Hi’ to Kevin, Reigate’s store manager on Wednesday and have a look at what Tinc will be bringing to the town.

You can find Tinc on Twitter @tinc_uk and on Facebook wearetinc

Tinc – 61 High Street, Reigate RH2 9AT





Credit: Michelle Alexander

Reigate – Well and Truly Pillaged

Ghoulies & ghosties, witches, Batman, Spiderman, werewolves and pumpkins were all to be seen ‘pillaging’ Reigate Town Centre at the weekend.

The sun came out on Saturday (1st Nov) to welcome everyone coming into town to celebrate Reigate Hallowmas and to #PillagetheVillage.

Hundreds of families descended on Cullenders in Bell Street and COOK in the High Street to pick up their bags and donate food items for the local foodbank Loveworks. It proved so popular that they ran out of the bags supplied and had to use some of their own.

Shops & businesses had balloons festooned outside and treats inside for the little ones. Fat Face had a Halloween hunt inside their store which was a big hit.

What a fantastic day and of course a big thank you goes to all the shops & businesses who joined in and for being so generous with all their ‘treats’. Gerrards in the High Street went through seven…yes SEVEN tins of sweets.

The donations to Loveworks has been astonishingly generous with over 60 full to the brim shopping bags & crates. Loveworks are currently sorting through the donations and will share images of the final haul and number of items donated once this has been done.

Some lovely comments from families who took part:

Thanks for the trick or treating this morning, the kids had a great time and it was a lovely way to contribute to the food bank. Hope the shop keepers thought it was worthwhile too!”

“Thank you for a great couple of hours doing pillage the village my two really enjoyed this. Loved fat-face’s challenge to find the ghouls around the shop and their pumpkins well done! Hope to do it again next year x””

“What a successful event! My little man (2.5 years old) loved saying BOO in the shops in exchange for a sweetie. It was so busy some shops we visited ran out (at 11:45!). We bought some lovely steaks from the butcher (which we hadn’t visited before), and some stuff from Cook (what a treat!). Thanks for organising a brilliant event. Already looking forward to next year!!”

​”Just to say my girls had a great time earlier and a special shout out to the ladies in The Lemon Tree shop my little girl got alittle upset as she was offered chocolate and has multiple food allergies dairy included so we couldn’t accept the chocolate as it could put in her hospital so they kindly gave her alittle gift instead it was much appreciated and a kind thought”

“Thank you for a fab day. The kids worn out…yay. We have never really walked around Reigate before and I have been in some fab shops today without the kids moaning.”

“Pass on my thanks too. My daughter also enjoyed and I got to window shop. Need to go back on my own now. It was such a lovely afternoon.”

Looking forward to organising next years ‘pillage the village’ and Reigate Hallowmas fun. Bigger & better. Pumpkin carving competitions, stocks, gruesome games, street entertainers…sounds good huh?

Hope to see you all next year and make Reigate the place to go on Halloween. #ReigateHallowmas #PillagetheVillage.

Until next year! In the meantime, check out the gallery below and video.

Reigate Hallowmas – Pillage the Village Gallery

Vloggers, The Saccone Joly’s (Jonathan Joly and his wife Anna Saccone) who live nearby came to #PillagetheVillage with their two children. Here’s the video they filmed which is up on their YouTube channel. Watch from about 4mins 30secs in.

Ghoulies, ghosties, guising & souling

Hallowe’en (All Hallows Eve) is a well celebrated tradition across the UK. Trick or treating, parties, apple bobbing & veritable home grown drinking games. Where does the term ‘Hallowmas’ come from?

The tradition of going from door to door receiving food already existed in Great Britain and Ireland in the form of “souling” before ‘trick or treating’, where children and poor people would go door to door on Hallowmas (1st November) sing and say prayers for the dead on All Souls Day in return for cakes. Also there’s guising where children disguised in costumes going from door to door for food and coins also predates trick or treat where masqueraders in disguise carrying lanterns made out of scooped out turnips, visit homes to be rewarded with cakes, fruit and money.

Not only does Shakespeare mention the practice in his comedy The Two Gentlemen of Verona (1593), it has been known that a few recent writers have applied this term to the three days from 31 October to 2 November inclusive as a synonym of Hallowtide

All children love to go ‘trick or treating’ but it is becoming more and more difficult for parents to do this with their children. Not everyone likes people knocking on their doors and for some where they live it’s nigh on impossible. Let’s make it fun for EVERYONE.

Introducing #PillagetheVillage, on Saturday 1st November 11.00am-4.00pm. Shops & businesses in the town centre will open their doors to little pillagers of Reigate. Participating shops will have black & orange balloons outside and treats inside for the pillagers. Grown ups can collect a trick or treat bag from either Cullenders in Bell St or Cook in the High St and can also leave a donation of a non-perishable food item for local food bank Loveworks.

On the same day it’s Reigate Street Eats in Tunnel Road, with fantastic street food from Flippin Cow, The Tinderbox, Dog Town, Abycina, Crocus Paella and more, with music, mulled cider & few other naughty treats. Plus you or the kiddies can ‘bob’ for apples and even get your face painted.

And for grown up stuff Market Stores have joined in the #ReigateHallowmas fun. They have live music by The Gremlins on All Hallows Eve (Friday) and a Ghostbusters Night, “I Ain’t Afraid of No Ghost”, upstairs on Saturday. Showing the films plus hot dogs, popcorn & nachos. What’s not to like?

Let’s make #ReigateHallowmas the place to be each year. Next year pumpkin carving competitions, best dressed ghouls, more parties and general good fun for everyone of all ages.

Enjoy #ReigateHallowmas #pillagethevillage #reigatestreeteats – post pictures and share the fun.


1st Nov Street Eats

Market Stores