We’ve decided to
rest spend the weekend in Retford. It’s an interesting market town with a long history. This morning we wandered into the town centre to look at the Saturday Market which has been running since it received its first charter (the right to hold a fair) by Henry III in 1246.
The building with the clock tower in the above photo is the ‘new’ town hall. The old town hall was located opposite until it was demolished in 1868. I was rather intrigued by the dark red brick building adjacent to the hall.
There’s a smaller square in the NE corner of the market square and again my eye was attracted by a sign.
Retford was largely destroyed by fire in 1528 (a similar fate to Nantwich and probably caused by similar conditions) but it recovered when the Great North Road was diverted to pass through the town in 1766. The Chesterfield Canal arrived in 1777. Apparently the original plan was for the canal to go directly from Stackwith on the Trent to Chesterfield but the influential members of the Retford and Worksop communities were able to get the route diverted.
The main street is a pleasant pedestrian mall with a good range of shops.
It was here we noticed the sandwich board advertising the Kiwi Cafe on High Street. They were advertising a ‘Kiwi Breakfast’ which is new to us. Curiosity took us to have a look. Perhaps they would have a kiwi-burger with beetroot on the menu.
Many years ago we were living in Whangarei, NZ and used to hear our neighbour refer to his two small daughters as “ little tarts!” His wife objected and he then referred to her as “Big Tart”. Today we wandered into the mall bakery where I selected “two little tarts”. Actually I selected a “Big Tart” but Jan was having none of it! I’ve lived a relatively sheltered life an therefore not seen many tarts so seeing a big “Manchester Tart” in Retford was quite an experience.
The tart on the left is a raspberry, apple and custard tart whilst the mystery “Manchester Tart” is on the right. I now know a Manchester Tart consists of a pastry base with a layer of red jam on the base. It then has a piece of banana standing vertically in the middle which is covered with a dome of custard. Coconut flakes cover the top. They were both very tasty.
Oh, apparently the Pilgrim Fathers came from the Retford area. Those of you who have had nothing better to do over the last five years may recall I wrote about the Pilgrim Steps in Plymouth when we were living there in 2011.