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 Chestnut group providing meals for hospitals and care homes
At the time of going to press volunteers at the Chestnut Group had cooked, packed and delivered nearly 2,000 free meals to hospitals, care homes and communities within the East Region. Thanks to the generosity and goodwill of our communities and local businesses, they are delighted to have reached their initial target of donating 10,000 free meals to NHS and care frontline workers, having raised £25,000.
The company report care homes will get help, with care packages being delivered to Davers Court and Glastonbury Court Care Homes in Bury St Edmunds and the first meals to The Chantry, a Sue Ryder care centre in Ipswich. Chestnut has also joined forces with Newmarket Festival co-ordination group to deliver 1000 meals to support local communities in Newmarket and surrounding villages.
The coffee shop at Tuddenham Nurseries is now open at weekends for takeaways only. The shop has been awarded the Gold Award for ‘Suffolk County Council’s Eat Out, Eat Well’ Healthy Eating Award Scheme.
Stoberry shrimps
Stoberry Potted Shrimps based at Cowlinge, has launched its online offering and is delivering across the UK. Their brown shrimps have been sourced in the shallow waters off the Norfolk wash and hand peeled just a few miles away in Kings Lynn. Founded over 15 years ago by a husband and wife team in their Suffolk kitchen, the secret Stoberry Potted Shrimp recipe has recently changed hands to another husband and wife team just a couple of miles away. For more information go to
  Fresh thinking
Yvonne Harbutt of Rougham Nurseries explains how their business has adapted to cope with the recent trading challenges
How have you adapted your seasonal fresh fruit and vegetables alongside a
business to cope with the coronavirus? Our focus was how we could help and assist our customers through the early
days of the crisis. Overnight our farm shop was inundated with requests for deliveries and collections and we found ourselves working 18 hour days to cope with the enquiries to provide an essential service to the local community. Our working practices were changing daily as the situation developed. Throughout the lockdown the farm shop has remained open on a daily basis whilst the plant sales area has been closed for browsing. Gradually we have been able to add plant sales and reopened the nursery to customers. We realised from an early stage this will mark the beginning of change and our business will no doubt emerge in a very different way. With the cancellation of flower shows and events this year we are exploring new ways to replace this loss of our core business.
I think more people have discovered you during this crisis?
On a positive note, Covid-19 has brought us many new customers - whilst many knew we existed, they had never visited before and seem to have been impressed with our offering in the farm shop, returning to become regulars. Our hope is that we gain some new loyal customers who we can continue to serve in the farm shop and to assist with plants and gardening enquiries. We would like to thank all our regular customers for their help and support - they hve given us inspiration to keep going in these challenging times.
People may know you for your plants but your food and drink offering has grown
We opened the farm shop eight years ago. Our aim was always to offer locally sourced,
range of local products. You will find Maynards Juice, Butterworths tea and coffee, Nibble Nose cheese, Stokes sauces, Pakenham Watermill flour, Jam Shed - jams and chutneys and more. On Saturday we stock freshly baked artisan bread from The Friendly Loaf in Nowton. Local eggs and fresh milk are also on sale.
Is it too late for people to buy some bedding and pot plants for the summer? What would you recommend for people hoping to get some mid and late summer colour?
Most of us will have baskets and tubs already planted for the summer but there are plenty of perennials and shrubs to consider for the borders to add colour through to the autumn. Salvia, verbena, monarda and delphinium are colourful favourites as are a range of climbers including clematis, honeysuckle and jasmine. Butterfly and bee friendly gardening is becoming very popular and there are many varieties of plants to choose from which will encourage them into the garden. Interest in growing your own fruit and vegetables has really taken off, especially this year. With time on their hands, people are choosing to grow their own crops. We have a large range of plants to choose from to inspire families to give itago.
What are your opening times?
During the current crisis we are open 10am- 4pm, seven days a week. The nursery is celebrating 60 years of business this year.
The family run business established in 1960 has seen three generations of the Harbutt family continue to serve the local community.
Our plans to celebrate the anniversary have been put on hold for this year but instead we will be celebrating 61 years next year. We hope to have some interesting events throughout the year to mark the occasion.

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