June is the perfect month for food lovers in Abingdon, not least of all because it’s time once more for the annual Abingdon Food and Drink Festival. And with long, light days here at last, it’s a wonderful time of year to get out in the great outdoors and enjoy a picnic. With its lovely riverside location, there are many places that make Abingdon the ideal picnic spot.
Abingdon Food and Drink Festival
Saturday 24 June 2017 at Rye Farm Meadow, Abingdon Bridge, OX14 3HP
Nestling in the water meadows of the River Thames at Abingdon, the Abingdon Food and Drink Festival takes place at Rye Farm Meadow, a picturesque and popular spot with free car parking near the centre of town.
Now in its fourth year, this festival (organised by The Rotary Club) is growing in popularity each year and promises to be bigger and better than ever before. There will be loads of foodie treats to tempt you from dozens of stalls offering a fusion of flavours ranging from home-grown in Oxfordshire to exciting international cuisines and street food, as well traditional favourites such as gourmet burgers, hot dogs, pies, pizzas and pancakes.
Alongside these delights you can expect cookery demonstrations, children’s workshops and entertainment, live music and the all-important picnic area.
Abbey Meadow & Abbey Gardens
Abbey Meadow - already a wonderful place to spend time, 2017 sees a range of improvements taking place which include a new play area due to open this summer.
Abbey Gardens – last year this was judged one of the best parks in the country and awarded Green Flag status for the eighth year in a row, which recognises it as a well-managed, well-maintained area with excellent facilities. The ruins in Abbey Gardens are not relics of the abbey as some may suspect but are known as Trendell’s Folly, created in the 19th century when this was a private garden.
Take your picnic with you on a riverside walk or cycle ride: check out ‘The Abingdon Waterways Walk.’
If you’re heading for Abingdon Lock, do keep a look out for art works by ‘River Banksy’ including the latest one – a giraffe!
If you’re not feeling that energetic, a picnic whilst relaxing on the riverbank is a great option too, watching the boats go by, and swans and other waterfowl on the river.
Boat Hire and Boat Trips
A picnic on a boat is a fine thing. Hire one from family firm Abingdon Bridge Marine Ltd who have rowing boats and 6/8 capacity diesel day-boats which can be hired hourly or for up to a full day. Or just sit back and relax on one of their organised boat trips which take in some of the most beautiful scenery in England
Abingdon Boat Centre also has easy to use self-drive boats. Discover the beautiful reaches of the upper Thames from their town-centre base by the bridge at Abingdon.
Pack Your Picnic
Added Ingredients deli in Stert Street is a great place to stock up on all the food and drink you’ll need to make your picnic perfect. Whether your tastes are traditional or more exotic, you’re sure to find some tasty treats here.
A picnic basket and picnic blankets are, of course, a must! Treat yourself to something new from Lewis Baker in Bridge Street, a regular Aladdin’s cave offering great prices on discounted items.