Cooking in the Lancashire countryside

PUBLISHED: 19:36 14 January 2010 | UPDATED: 15:20 20 February 2013

Philippa in a field

Philippa in a field

Our cookery editor Philippa James hails local food heroes,swoons over samphire and cooks in the Lancashire countryside<br/>Main pictures by Neil Hickson

LAST month I mentioned my chagrin at the Post Office closures. The PO is the very hub of small villages; a shop, mail centre, information point, (sometimes a little too much information, there's story, known to Jane and I, but definitely not repeatable, here!) a point of care for carers and the elderly, a friendly face, and always a welcoming smile.

My local PO at Mawdesley is all of these things...and now, so much more! I commented how great it was to see notices up, proclaiming their pride in local produce, such as meat, fruit, salad, vegetables, cheeses, ready meals bakery and dairy items, made down the road and from neighbouring villages.

It's just as things used to be! Supporting local farmers, and producers, reducing food miles and providing great food, packed with taste and nutrients, which hasn't travelled half way round the world!

This is not, it transpires, a profit-led incentive by a 'retail' chain, under whose banner the shop trades but a personal initiative by the Poole family, John Joan, and their son, Tom and wife Steph, to support and endorse local farmers and producers.

As Tom commented: 'There aren't many village shops where you can get brown rice, and handmade humous, or a Thai green curry, made locally.'

Fantastic! And as Gordon Ramsay would say: 'Job done!'

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