Muddy Stilettos first tottered into the world in Bucks/Oxon in 2011 as a bit of fun. Launched by national journalist Hero Brown, the idea was a simple one: to write a witty but indispensable guide to the very best restaurants, walks, boutiques, day trips, hotels, interiors and events in the local counties and in doing so, perk up her social life.
In Nov 2012 the site turned into a business, and seven years on, Muddy Bucks/Oxon has become so successful that it has moved into 26 counties, including Bedfordshire, Berkshire, Cambridgeshire, Cornwall, Devon, Dorset, Essex, Gloucestershire, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, the Isle of Wight, Kent, Leicestershire, Northants, Norfolk, Kent, Norfolk, Rutland, Suffolk, Surrey, Sussex, Wiltshire, Warwickshire, the West Midlands – and of course, Somerset.
And that’s where I join the story. I’m a freelance writer and multi-media scriptwriter who made the move down from The Smoke (East Dulwich) a few years ago. Rocking up in the idyllic village of Montacute (golden hamstone houses clustered around an Elizabethan manor, wild garlic covered hillsides, a folly and a village pond – it’s got the lot), in Somerset and close to the Dorset border, I’ve made loads of friends, love the rural life and even enjoy the occasional scything fair – but sometimes I need a little more.
I’ll be seeking out the new, interesting and quirky throughout the county, and opening up my Rolodex on the very best food and drink, independent shops, arts & culture, hotels, spas, walks, days out – and more.
This is the Muddy Mantra, so you know what to expect from the site:
- I try everything out myself so that you can fully trust my opinions. On the occasions that I haven’t been somewhere myself, I let you know that’s the case.
- I don’t write advertorial. This means I will never accept payment to write about something I don’t believe in.
- I accept tickets to free shows, festivals, restaurants, events etc with the purpose of reviewing or publicising them on Muddy Stilettos, as I’m sure you appreciate it’s pretty expensive zipping around trying stuff out all the time. Hotels, restaurants, cafes, bars – if you want me to try you out, please get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org and @muddysomerset.
- I’ll never write a nasty review. I’m not into trashing people, brands or companies. But if you’re not good enough, I won’t write about you in Muddy Stilettos, regardless of whether I have paid for the experience or not. This gives me the editorial control I need and the trust that my readers demand.
- Muddy Stilettos is a commercial site and accepts advertising and payment to feature products and brands. However, we believe passionately in only working with brands that share our ethos and are relevant to our readers. We retain editorial control and independence at all times.
I hope you love the site. Please tell your friends about it, and sign up for my splendiferous newsletter delivered to your inbox to be the first to know about all the cool stuff happening in the area!