Historically known for brickmaking, brewing beer and manufacturing parts of the steam engines for Titanic – but what is Bedford about today?
Our Bedford journey began somewhere in the mid 80’s in the old North Wing hospital. When you could drive through the entire, unpedestrianised town centre, Madonna’s ‘like a virgin’ playing on the radio and not a Costa coffee in sight! We love this video showing exactly how it used to be.
Village life meant we couldn’t wait to be old enough to take a trip to town on our own! Listening to radio B97 and making a list to take to Andy’s Records to spend our pocket money. At school so many people were desperate to get out of Bedford… go and live in Brighton or London or anywhere ‘less whack’. But why have so many of them returned to settle down?
Lords & Ladies started almost 14 years ago when all beauty rooms were lilac with pictures of pebbles on the walls and Enya on repeat. Thank goodness we have moved on! Now located on the ever-more trendy St. Cuthbert’s Street, we are proud to be Bedford born and bred. Our gorgeous Georgian building has been a bakers, a sweet shop, a ladies outfitters (twice) and a home many times over. Just one building – so rich in history!
With more independent businesses than Cambridge, perhaps this is why so many people return? On our street alone you can get the best massage in town, have your shoes fixed by a proper cobbler, enjoy a hand made bagel and authentic Portuguese custard tart, sample many a craft beer, buy some delicious Bedford bangers, do a spot of shopping and end it all with the most delightful cocktail made by the funkiest bartender around.
How cool is that?! – just maybe not all in one day!
All of these independents, and more, have opened in the eight years we have been on St Cuthbert’s Street which is incredible. A sure sign that our town is thriving.
Our beautiful embankment is a favourite spot and we love that Tabitha Mary chose it to make one of her many modern prints, along with The Pavilion, Bedford School, Higgins Castle Brewery and the town bridge. Any Bedfordian knows when the river festival will be and the best spot to set up picnic and watch some live music.
Throughout the seasons, there are places to go and things to do. The recent burst of sunshine made us all head to one of the many local green spaces which, not long ago, were white from snow. Watching this stunning snowy video by Don Weeraseerie of Bedford from the sky inspired us to want to shout about our hometown!
We asked some of our friends & family what words came to mind when they thought of Bedford and here are some of them…
So after living here all of our lives and while doing some online research for this blog post, we realise that Bedford is, well, the place we want to be!
Yes – there could be a few more clothes shops for us to peruse around. Yes – we are losing our M&S.
BUT… we will survive! We must embrace change and look forward to the next chapter.
Helen & Amy