Constantine Cornwall

Farmers Market Springs Back

It was lovely opening the Market up again ‚ so good to see so many of you. Your support is fantastic and much appreciated by all the local producers. After so many comments about how you missed the Market and its social side during January and February, we will review whether to close next year! For now we are very much up and running once a month on the second Saturday.

Farmers Market Profile

As you walk into the market, you are greeted by the site of the Pencoose stall opposite you ‚ covered in a wonderful array of cut flowers, plants and some fruit or veg. Hidden behind the colourful bunches and mixed bouquets ‚ often quite literally – is Jane Miners, who along with her partner David Skewer (aka ‚ Crockett) owns and runs Pencoose Market Garden (www.pencoose.co.uk), a small holding of 12 acres with a mixture of daffodils and cut flowers, perennial plants and a small amount of veg and fruit.

The small holding has quite a history! Jane is the 5th generation of her family to live and work on the small holding. Her great, great grandfather, who was a Mine Captain, had the cottage built (Jane still has the bill from the builder for ¬£92, and more importantly a large quantity of fresh butter!). As a hobby farmer he then took in one field a year and leased from Lord Falmouth for 10 years, when he was finally able to buy the land outright. The small holding was hobby farmed for a further two generations until Jane grandmother let the land to a local family in the 1920s, who established it as a market garden. They kept it for over 60 years ‚ starting off working the land with horses. In fact, Jane worked for them during the summer holidays ‚ digging up spuds, planting cabbages and topping and tailing turnips and swedes. The family gave up the market garden in the 80s; it reverted to pasture and was let to a local sheep farmer.

Then Jane met David, who had been market gardening down on the Lizard. Both had a love of growing flowers, so they pooled resources and turned three meadows at Pencoose into daffs, cut flowers, foliage and some veg. They also have lots of chooks, rabbits and a horse. If Jane looked a little tired at the March market it was because she was up helping with the birth of their first ewe lamb the night before! They are the proud owners of a big black sheep called a zwartbles a Dutch breed which is black with a white blaze down its face. The breed is renowned for being huge and very docile and lean and tasty ‚ though Jane not sure they will ever find out about the latter two ‚ as she says the sheep are far too unusual and lovely to eat!

Mandy Milano