Market Harborough is our local town, and well worth a visit. It is easily accessible on the bus from Pitsford A508 and from Brixworth (see the X7 timetable here), taking about 30 minutes from Pitsford to the town square. Or you can take a taxi, using one of our local taxi companies:
A reminder of some local taxi firms. We advise getting a quote before you book.
Amber Cars – 01604 232666 https://www.ambercarsnorthampton.com/
Ace Cars – 01604 719697 http://www.acecars4u.co.uk/
Bounds – 01604 626262 http://www.boundstaxis.co.uk/
Phoenix Class – 01604 222222 https://www.phoenixclass.co.uk/
Station Taxis Northampton – 01604 636363 – http://stationtaxisnorthampton.co.uk/
Northampton Taxis – 01604 404040 – https://www.northampton-taxis.co.uk/
KPD taxis – 01604 882798 https://www.kpdgroup.com/private-hire/
(KPD taxis are based in Holcot village)
Thursday is one of my favourite days to visit Market Harborough, especially the first Thursday of the month when the farmers market sets up stalls in the main market square just in front of Tesco. You’ll find lots of local producers who bring their cheeses, pies, vegetables, flowers, fruit, chutneys and all of the good things you would expect to find at a farmers market. You can load up your bags with all sorts of delicious products to take home and eat with your sourdough.*
Even if the farmers market isn’t on, there are plenty of wonderful shops to visit while you’re in Market Harborough. It is a very small town – you can walk from one end to the other in a little over 10 minutes… and that’s if you are meandering slowly and taking a time to look at the shops.
One of my favourite buildings in Market Harborough is the Old Grammar School pictured above. It’s a beautiful and unusual design right in the centre of ht town, standing on stone plinths and timber legs. Built around 1604, the building has been fully restored by you can still sense its history.
Another of my favourite places to visit is a lovely shop called Bagel & Griff. If you go in, say hello to the owner Helena. She has the most gorgeous Scandinavian-inspired stylish housewares and homewares. You’ll see some of her beautiful pieces here in the school, including my salt and pepper pots, and some of my salad bowls, cups and plates. Upstairs she has a stationary department… if you like stationary, or you want to buy a card to send home, or a small, exquisite gift – something you would very likely not find anywhere else to take back home, then do venture upstairs. But give yourself a good 20 minutes or so because, if you’re like me, you will just love everything in this shop.
There are two bakeries in Market Harborough, and you really should take the time to visit both of them. They are only a short walk from each other, but they are very different. The first one is Hambleton Bakery on Church Street, right opposite the Kitchen Range Cookshop (another shop that’s incredibly well worth popping into for the widest selection of kitchen essentials and paraphernalia). The bakery is owned and run by Tim Hart and Julian Carter. Julian is a lovely man who has jumped in to help me out on several occasions. He makes some really interesting sourdoughs, real sourdoughs. Many of them are based on recipes using local ingredients, including his local beer barm bread. They also do a range of pastries and sweet things, all are highly recommended. The other bakery is The Garage Bakehouse. It is possibly the smallest bakery in the world… sited in a single garage. They make fantastic sourdough and absolutely brilliant sandwiches. If you want to grab a sandwich from here, you will find they have the freshest, most delicious range of sandwiches – absolutely the best in Market Harborough. You can buy them to take out and wander over to one of the benches to have a picnic.
I think most of my favourite shops have to be on Church Street. Another I would recommend is a very lovely shop called Lavender Blue selling homewares and accessories, as well as flowers.
If you decide to take a trip to Market Harborough, I would suggest going early – getting a bus at about 8 or 8.30 am, which gives you a good couple of hours in town to wander through the streets and explore the shops. To get back to The Sourdough School on time, you will need to catch a bus from Market Harborough as close to 11.30 am as possible. Once you’re back in Pitsford it’s about an 8-minute walk from the bus stop, through the village, past the pub and around the cornerback to the school. Please do check the timetable for bus times. And also remember to let the driver know that you want to get off in Pitsford… occasionally they have been known to drive right past us!
* Just a quick note if you buy anything that needs refrigeration… we only have limited space in the fridges at the school. They are usually already pretty full of sourdough, especially on warm days. We’re happy to provide a small amount of fridge space if needed, but please do bear in mind when you are shopping that it’s not unlimited.