Fresh, juicy strawberries have featured in our breakfast, smoothies, snacks and desserts over the past three days since strawberry picking at Crockford Bridge Farm in Surrey. After a our first visit to their pumpkin patch last October*, I made a mental note to return to Crockford Bridge Farm when I discovered that they also have summertime Pick Your Own fruit and vegetable crops. And once we approached early June, it was on the calendar for a lovely day out over the weekend when luckily we also had some warmer weather, not a guarantee these days in London. (*I’ve added some photos and more info about the pumpkin patch at the end of this post.)
Only 30 minutes away and just off the M25 in Surrey, Crockford Bridge Farm is conveniently located for a morning or afternoon out of Central London. There are two large parking lots, one in front of the Pick Your Own area and the other in front of the Garden Centre, plenty of space to have a picnic and an ice cream parlour with outdoor seating area near a playground. In the Garden Centre, besides the expected plants and shrubs and garden decor, you’ll find a large Farm Shop, restaurant, coffee shop and restroom facilities.
For fruit picking, you use either a large cardboard basket (holds about 3kg), a plastic basket (holds approx 1 kg) or a small plastic punnet (holds approx 1 lb). The carrier bags on the roll shown on the right-hand side of the table are for picking vegetables (such as asparagus) or rhubarb.
Now armed with a basket each, we carried on to the strawberry fields to start filling them up.
Little T was immediately drawn to the bright red familiar shapes peeking out from the rows of plants. We found a good spot teeming with juicy red strawberries, especially towards the middle of the plants, sat down and picked away. We were on the field before 12pm, but I’d recommend coming earlier if possible as it does get busy with people arriving for lunchtime.
We kept an eye and helped Little T to avoid the unripe green ones that still need time to grow and to steer clear of a few ruined ones, otherwise he happily plucked them off the plant on his own and did a great job filling up his basket. It was lovely to see him so involved and engrossed in the task!
It wouldn’t be a trip to the farm without a tractor sighting!
After paying for our strawberries, which turned out to be approximately 4kg for £13.60, we crossed the field to have a look at the other crops. There are loads of crops becoming available for picking throughout the summer, such as raspberries, carrots, courgettes and peas, and you’ll find the latest updates on what’s in season on Crockford Bridge Farm’s crop calendar.
Visiting a Pick Your Own Farm is a fun, educational experience and I highly recommend strawberry picking at Crockford Bridge Farm. It’s a short drive out of London and in addition to their farm shop, the next door garden centre and Pick Your Own farm (open May to September), they also offer outdoor activities during the holiday season: dig or cut your own Christmas tree (available from late November) and Santa’s Secret Forest.
Crockford Bridge Farm
Address: New Haw Road, Addlestone, Nr. Weybridge, Surrey KT15 2BU
Opening Hours: Monday to Saturday 1000 to 1730; Sunday 1000 to 1630
Pumpkin Picking: Bookings are required. Costs £4 per person, 1 voucher required per person all ages 1+. Cost of the vouchers are redeemed against the value of your pumpkin purchases.
Crop availability: Check the latest crop availability and PYO farm updates before visiting at https://www.crockfordbridgefarm.co.uk/farm-pyo
Food and refreshments: You’ll find an Ice Cream Parlour and Tea Shack with outdoor seating area at the entrance. There is also a restaurant and a coffee shop in the Weybridge Garden Centre located right next to the farm.
Toilets: There are no toilet facilities at the farm and it is recommended to use the public restrooms in Addlestone which is a 2 minute drive away. If you are shopping or dining at the Weybridge Garden Centre, there are restrooms with baby changing facilities located by the restaurant in the Weybridge Garden Centre.
Farm Shop: The Farm Shop sells a wide range of produce, gourmet foods, baked goods, eggs and dairy, meats, honey – much of it grown or sourced locally. They also sell a huge range of American treats and goodies, special diet foods (e.g. gluten free) and seasonal products for Easter, Halloween and Christmas.
As Crockford Bridge Farm explains on their website, here in the UK, they often experience ground frost at the end of September and early October, which can seriously damage the pumpkins and make their bottoms go soggy, so the pumpkins are picked before and displayed for purchase in their farm shop (from 1st October) or arranged in rows in their pumpkin patch, as shown below.
All photos copyright Piccolo Explorer.