Some of the things we love most about Marlow
PUBLISHED: 16:49 20 February 2017 | UPDATED: 16:49 20 February 2017
The sights and sounds of the Georgian market town are always a pick-me-up, Maureen McLean decides
Jack Frost doesn’t make a bit of difference to those living in and visiting the pretty Buckinghamshire town. Nestled on the River Thames, there’s always a real buzz in the restaurants, bars and shops of Marlow. Even when it’s very cold, you’ll find hardy diners eating al fresco at the many restaurants and coffee shops.
The Macdonald Compleat Angler is a favourite for lunch, dinner and a spot of afternoon tea with views across the Thames. What’s more the first class Riverside Restaurant has a special offer for the months of February and March with 25% off both lunch and dinner, see here.
The Macdonald Compleat Angler is also home to the Sindhu Restaurant by Atul Kochhar and serves excellent Indian cuisine.
Those seeking a taste of the delights produced by celebrity chef Tom Kerridge might head for The Hand & Flowers, his two Michelin star restaurant in West Street. And one of our favourites is The Coach, also in West Street, where Tom offers a very decent lunch and dinner menu, simply divided into ‘Meat’ and ‘No Meat’, although strict vegetarians will note the fishy choices on the ‘No Meat’ list!
But if you need warming up, choices at The Coach might include baked egg with bacon and Ogleshield ‘Thermidor’, or Mussels Mariniere with warm stout and brown bread, each £7.50. Breakfasts, served 8.30 to 10.30am, could provide the necessary fuel before setting off for the shops or a walk, with options from fresh fruit salad up to the magnificent ‘Full English’, £11.
Whatever your choice, prepare too for a feast of history in Marlow. It’s recorded in the Domesday Book as Merlaue. One of the great landmarks in Marlow is the 19th century suspension bridge. The recent unexpected closure after a huge lorry became stuck on it has been well documented and was a blow to local residents and business owners. We are really pleased to see Marlow Bridge is open again and business is as usual in Marlow. Mind you, it was quite magical walking on the centre of the bridge at night whilst it was closed to traffic.
Next to Marlow Bridge you can’t miss the majestic Victorian built All Saints Church with its beautiful spire. Many services are held there throughout the year and it is a popular church for weddings.
There are numerous clubs that meet in Marlow including, to name but a few, Marlow Camera Club, Archaeology in Marlow, Marlow Cricket Club and Marlow Hockey Club (a friend of mine still plays hockey there at the grand age of 80 plus!). The Town Council detail the huge list of clubs and societies on their website, marlowtowncouncil.org.uk.
Higginson Park in Marlow is very popular for walks by the River Thames. It has a café and great play area for the kids. You’ll see plenty of swans and visiting geese, especially in the winter and they are always looking to be fed!
A family favourite for us is Burgers Tea Room in Marlow. It’s been in the town since 1942 and is always busy whatever the weather.
Marlow is synonymous with rowers. Even on a freezing winter day you’ll often see rowers and kayakers gliding under Marlow Bridge.
If you enjoy watching rowing and indulging in a summer picnic plus a glass or two of bubbly, don’t forget to book your tickets for Marlow Town Regatta on 10 and 11 June, see marlowtownregatta.org.
The Thames Path runs through Marlow and if you haven’t had a walk down to Marlow Lock it’s really worth a visit. You can rest your weary feet en route in the lovely Two Brewers pub. The pub is a stopping off point for the Swan Uppers each summer when they carry out their census of the swans on the Thames.
Near to Marlow Lock we stumbled across the house Thames Lawn, where Captain of HMS Colossus, Vice Admiral Sir James Nicol Morris lived between 1811 and 1830. You can walk along the Thames Path via Marlow’s Higginson Park to Temple Lock, Hurley Lock and Cookham Lock.
Slightly out of town, Marlow Bottom has its very own Rebellion brewery. We had a visit there last summer and it has a superb shop selling beer, wine and local produce - www.rebellionbeer.co.uk.
On our travels through Marlow we came across a great find in Institute Road, the haberdashery, wool and fabric shop nicely named Lady Sew and Sew, see ladysewandsew.co.uk. So for all you creative folks out there time to get knitting some warm winter woolies!
• MK17: 14 beautiful villages to explore in the Buckinghamshire postcode - Stretching from Aylesbury Vale and into Bedfordshire, this area tells the story of recent British history at the heart of our country. Sue Bromley takes us on a tour