A top notch Blue Badge guide, beautiful countryside, rich history, rattling good stories and a brand new opportunity to enjoy a tractor-trailer tour and afternoon tea at the Tiptree Jam Factory.
Meet at10.30am for morning coffee and biscuits (included) at RHS Hyde Hall near Chelmsford if you are coming from the South or Abberton Reservoir near Colchester if you are coming from the North or West. The lonely Essex marshlands are Smuggling Country. Whole villages were involved in bringing contraband tea, gin and even soap ashore under cover of night. People went to church to watch over their precious booty hidden in the crypt! We stop in a beautiful smugglers village for wonderful views across the Blackwater estuary and creeks.
Ancient Maldon, home of the famous sea salt is a good spot to stop to buy lunch - keep it light or you won’t have room for your Tiptree tea!
Wilkin & Sons are the John Lewis of jam – the workers own a stake in the company and many live in company houses. The new 40-minute trailer farm is very, very good. See (and taste!) the huge variety of fruit grown and marvel at the self-misting space age greenhouse where Little Scarlet strawberries are grown on table tops to save the fruit pickers backs. You’ll also visit the quirky museum before your Tiptree tea - half a sandwich and a scone with cream and what else - Tiptree jam!