VH Xmas Pantry pic
Our first market – more successful than any of us had expected

Wow, that went quickly! Time to think about how far we’ve come and maybe reflect on what The Pantry may have contributed to life in Piddington.

The Pantry Christmas Market to be held on Saturday 2nd December will mark our 5th anniversary, and will be our biggest so far. We’ll be celebrating the determination of a small community to create and sustain a new village amenity in tough times, and the wide-ranging effect this successful venture has had on our village.

The first Pantry Market and Coffee Shop was held in the village hall on 1st December 2012. In an article published in the Bicester Advertiser (29th November 2012) Francesca Darby, one of the organisers, stated that “The intention is to make the market a regular feature … the hope being that this will eventually become a source of funding … and achieve greater local awareness for the plight of small villages.” At the time, Piddington had just lost its pub – one of the very few amenities left in the village.

Bicester Advertiser article
Bicester Advertiser, 29 November 2012

Fast forward five years (and over 20 markets) and we are still going strong, the organising group and fantastic volunteers still include the same faces and our stallholders continue to give their support.

Our original aim was to promote small local businesses and fundraise for a village shop. However, after village consultation, it was apparent that the latter aim lacked real viability. Nevertheless, the group believed that other village causes could be helped.

The Pantry has so far raised over £10,000, generated by profits from the general store, beer tent and coffee shop, stallholder fees, raffles and secondhand book sales. At each market, we have offered a free table to St Nicholas Church, where volunteers sell homemade cakes to raise funds for essential work on the building.

This summer The Pantry offered a donation of £3000 each to the committee of the village hall, towards the renovation of its kitchen, and to St Nicholas Church project group, for their plans to construct a kitchen/servery. We hope that by this time next year one if not both projects will be completed.

The Pantry may have had a more wide-ranging effect than simply raising money for village projects, however. It’s quite likely that the sense of involvement and community spirit it has fostered in villagers has led to other community initiatives, such as the three hugely successful Apple Days held in Piddington, which has resulted in Piddington Village Apple Juice and Piddington Cider, both of which are sold to raise further funds for village causes.

We feel delighted and proud that a small rural community that had lost most of its amenities has managed to create and sustain such a successful initiative in tough times. The market exists because people continue to come to it. While The Pantry blog has a worldwide following, it is our visitors who create the special atmosphere on the day.

So don’t forget, the Christmas Pantry will be held on SATURDAY 2nd DECEMBER, 10am to 2pm, in the village hall, Piddington, OX25 1PU, and will mark our fifth anniversary. It is going to be the biggest yet. Put the date in your diary and tell your friends!

In the meantime, thank you all for your continued support.


Christmas Market – The Countdown Starts Now!

The posters for the Christmas Market on 2nd December are starting to appear, so put the date in your diary now. It’s going to be a good one!

Pantry Xmas 2017 colour A4-page-0

Who’s coming?

Collage 2017-02-26 Pantry 3


Who’ll be here on 23 September?

As you can see from the list below, as well as our lovely regular stallholders, Zena (tempting bags), Chris (quality accessories), Kim (fab affordable jewellery and scarves), Paul (gorgeous greeting cards, wrapping paper, gifts and more) and Sandy (a wide range of cheeses, meats and other deli produce), we have several new stallholders and – back by popular demand – Flooseymoo, with her beautiful range of handmade jewellery.

Most of our new stallholders have websites, so have a browse at what they offer. I’m sure you’ll be tempted!



Zena Ashdown: Bespoke handbags and baskets

Flooseymoo Jewellery: Handmade silver & semi-precious gemstone jewellery

Horton Accessories: Fine accessories for women, men and the home

Jazzy Lily Hot Glass: Handmade glass bead jewellery – NEW

Katy Anne Crafts: Hama bead art/items and sewn items – NEW

Kim’s Jewels: Fun and affordable jewellery and scarves

Paul’s Cards: Phoenix cards, stationery and gift

Prime Wood Studios: Handcrafted wooden gifts – NEW

Rebecca White: Toiletries, jams & chutneys, handmade gifts, homemade dog treats – NEW

Elaine Whittaker: Tropic skin care – natural, cruelty free skin care products – NEW

Cake stall


General store

Coffee shop



Piddington Cottage Garden Plants: Plants grown by Maggie and Tony

Waddesdon Deli: Delicious home-cured and home-smoked produce, cheeses and more

Bicester Party Shop: Balloon decorations for all occasions and more

Beer stall

Food and drink

There’s plenty to enjoy at The Pantry if you’re feeling peckish.

Here’s what’s on offer at the Coffee Shop. Plus Sandy will be there with her delicious savoury treats, Richard will be bringing his gorgeous homemade fudge, and Andrew and Ian will be offering a range of local ales.

Pop along to Piddington Pantry tomorrow and perk up your tastebuds!

Pantry menu summer 2017-page-0

Who’s coming?


Here’s who’ll be at this year’s Summer Market on 24 June. Come along and say hello to the stallholders. Many are old favourites, but there are a couple that may be new to you – Patricia Bushell’s delightful handmade creations and Richard Conway’s fantastic homemade fudge. Richard was quite a hit at the last market, so if you missed him then, come and try his delicious treats.

Zena Ashdown: Bespoke handbags and baskets

Jennie Bosher: Handmade decorations and cards, cushions and toys

Patricia Bushell: Handmade angels, vintage paper flowers and knitted animals – NEW

Horton Accessories: Fine accessories for women, men and the home

Kim’s Jewels: Fun and affordable jewellery and scarves

Paul’s Cards: Phoenix cards, stationery and gift

Piddington Bakers: Village community stall selling delicious homemade cakes and bakes in aid of St Nicholas’s Church

Piddington Cottage Garden Plants: Plants grown by Maggie and Tony Pearce, usually propagated from plants in their own garden

Louise Vincent: Homemade cards and jewellery

Waddesdon Deli: A Pantry regular, Sandy’s stall sells delicious home-cured and home-smoked produce, cheeses and more

Woodstock Fudge Company: Delicious homemade fudge using traditional methods and ingredients

We also have the following regular attractions …

Beer Stall: Local ales from Vale Brewery Co. and XT Brewing Co.

General Store: Including products from the Cornfield Bakery, Jim and Jules, Shaken Oak Mustard, and more

Pantry Raffle: Fantastic prizes! Make sure you buy a ticket

And last but certainly not least, it’s the …
Coffee Shop: Homemade cakes from the Piddington Bakers, legendary bacon baps and more

Summer Market

Pantry summer 2017 colour A4-page-0The big banners are up beside the A41, posters are up in Piddington and surrounding villages and we’re getting ready for another market later this month.

Several stalwart Pantry volunteers are away for this one, so the remaining helpers will be working hard. Please come along, show your support for them and enjoy some homemade cake and a cuppa while you browse the stalls.