By Gabrielle Hall
From Broken Hill to Sevenhill – via London.
Not the most direct path, but that’s the way Sevenhill Producers Market founder Amanda Waldron found herself settling in South Australia’s Clare Valley.
And it’s proven a perfect place to raise a family and grow a small business.
Together with husband Phil Scarles, Amanda started the Sevenhill Producers Market almost 11 years ago as an outlet to sell their homemade produce.
Now it regularly attracts about 25 stallholders – selling everything from olive oil, honey, vegetables, felted goods and ice-cream, to pies, flowers, chooks, fish and dukkah.
“I think the success of our market has been in staying focussed on local produce,” Amanda says.
“You have to have made it or produced it yourself to be a stallholder here and people really love it because you get to meet the producers who are behind all the foods – the people who grew it or put it in a jar.”
The pair met in London working in hospitality – Amanda front of house and Phil as a chef.
“I grew up in Broken Hill but spent my holidays coming to Clare because my grandmother was born here,” Amanda says.
“When Phil and I moved back to Australia we lived in Western Australia for a while and came to the Clare Valley on holidays and just loved it here, it always felt so familiar and just felt right.”
Nowadays their aptly named London Hill (a happy mix of London and Broken Hill) produce, is a familiar sight at the monthly market.
“Phil bakes our breads as well as the pies using home grown lamb, beef, duck or goat,” Amanda says, ”I like doing all the sweet stuff such as cakes and jams, and baking lots of old-fashioned recipes that my gran made.”
Ma Waldron’s Spicy Tomato Relish is one of those – the recipe having been meticulously handed down through the generations.
“I had Ma Waldron’s spicy tomato relish on my school sandwiches,” Amanda added, “Now my whole house smells of it.”
Held on the last Saturday morning of each month, the Sevenhill market can be found at Madonna Hall on Main North Road, about 135 kilometres from Adelaide.