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Countrystride #93: A GRASMERE GINGERBREAD CHRISTMAS which we take a Grasmere ramble under wintry skies with local lass Joanne Hunter, Partner at Grasmere Gingerbread, for a seasonal trip down memory lane. Embarking from diminutive Church Cottage – the one-time school house – we learn about the life, heartbreaks and invention of Sarah Nelson, the working class Victorian cook who landed upon a new recipe for the moreish confection in 1854. Arriving at St Oswald's church, we revel in recollections of rushbearings past – views of the fells; the smell of flowers. As Mark gets his teeth into biscuity-cakey-yumminess, we delve into the culinary history of Cumbria and its links with Whitehaven, once Britain's second port. Finally, we talk Christmas, and snow under the streetlights, towers of variety boxes, the village Father Christmas... and Nanny Hunter's whist drive.

Church Cottage, Grasmere. Home of Grasmere Gingerbread.

Our guest for the day: local lass Joanne Hunter.

A peek into the bakery.

Joanne and Dave.

Inside St Oswald's church – location of the annual rushbearing ceremony.

Church Stile - Joanne's childhood home.

Looking Christmassy... the shop.


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