The Improbable Blog

No. 10: Orford

For anyone that’s been reading along you’ll understand why I went to this random village in Suffolk. I’ve now completed a trilogy of places named O*ford (see also, Otford and Oxford).

Before I quote (rip-off) Wikipedia and give you some history on Orford, lets talk about my bread baking skills. I don’t want to start calling myself a baking prodigy or anything but…

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Anyway, back to Wikipedia  my blog.

Orford is a small town in Suffolk that was an important port and fishing town in the middle-ages. It’s 105 miles from London, takes 2 hours in the car and it has a castle, as well as a handful of popular shops, pubs and cafes.

I didn’t, but I was tempted to buy fresh fish from the fishermen in the Quay and I saw some tasty looking seafood platters through the window of the Butley-Orford Oysterage and smokehouse.

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Starting from the castle I walked down to the Quay that overlooks Orford Ness. This is a National Trust island that, according to google, used to host an atomic weapons research facility! I was hoping to get the ferry over and play with something nuclear, but it only runs on selected days and sadly this wasn’t one of them.

So I followed a sign for the ‘The Orford Circular Walk’ instead.

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Suffolk is SO flat, which I find a bit boring (sorry). That said, it did seem good and remote as I only saw 2 other people on the circular walk, which felt calm and relaxing.

The Quay was full of old pretty boats too, always a bonus.


The circular walk is around 5 miles long and brought me back to Orford town, I enjoyed it but the closest thing to a hill was literally this:

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Spookily, the path was littered with stripped-bare corn husks and birds that had been half-eaten. I figured that it’s probably some creature they are working on over at the nuclear power station!

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Back in town I grabbed a quick snap of the church, because I’m aware that some of you reading this are nuns (you’re welcome sisters!) and headed for the car to start the drive home.

A sign caught my eye on the way home for High House Fruit Farm, who advertised selling fresh juices. I pulled the car down a narrow country lane and followed it until I reached an empty farmyard and an unattended room filled with bottles of different types of Apple Juice.

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Feeling a bit like Fantastic Mr Fox, I picked out a bottle of Cox and Bramley, paid via the honesty box and went on my merry way…

Two hours later I was back in London, cosying up with a cool glass of (delicious!) AJ and a slice of fresh toast.

Here ends the O*ford saga. Maybe.

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  1. Ruth March 14, 2018

    I love that you found a place called Orford! I feel all influential.

    This week I tried snowshoeing for the first time, it’s very fun. I don’t imagine the conditions back in Blighty are right for it at the moment though…

  2. Elizabeth Varley March 16, 2018

    Shame you missed The Jolly Sailor – used to go there for pub lunches with a bunch of other vicars when I was in Suffolk. The Orford Smokehouse is something else I’m sorry you missed because their smoked salmon fishcakes and smoked pretty much everything else you can imagine (smoked venison sausages, smoked cheese) are to die for. The vicar of Orford, by the way, is not only a valued friend of mine but also I imagine might have been able to tell you about the mutant sea creature. Since my time, I’m afraid.

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