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Happiness by the river

News ArticleHappiness by the river

Inspired by The Wind in the Willows, Clare Perkins, director of Choose Woodbridge, takes a whimsical look at the town’s historic riverside.

Clare Perkins

Photo Credit: James Lightfoot

Mole by Clare Perkins

Mole by Clare Perkins

“The Mole was bewitched. As he sat on the grass and looked across the river something bright began to twinkle,’’ taken from The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame. From his lookout on the bank of the River Deben, opposite the historic Tide Mill in Woodbridge, Mole spied an Anglo-Saxon wooden longboat being constructed in The Longshed.

He was curious and untied his little rowboat and began to row across the river to see what it was that twinkled and caught his eye. On arriving at the river wall beside Whisstocks Place, he tied up his rowboat and went to see what had beckoned him across. “What can it be?” Mole asked himself, looking at something twinkling brightly in the windows of The Chandlery building. “The Happiness Store has moved!’’ Mole exclaimed. He gasped as he looked through the windows and saw a magical winter kingdom with large stars hanging from the ceiling and all sorts of gorgeous things twinkling in the windows.

A Christmas tree sparkled with lights and was decorated with beautiful ornaments. Now Mole was very house proud and liked to fill his home with beautiful objects and give his friends thoughtful gifts, especially ones that are ethically sourced. He could do both here.

Happiness at Home

Credit: Jo Reynolds

Happiness Store has evolved into Happiness at Home, after ten years in the centre of Woodbridge to its new location beside the iconic Tide Mill which, offers demonstrations and activities for all ages. Coffeelink, a family-run business, is immediately opposite with delicious single-blend, hand-roasted coffees and takes pride in being ethically and environmentally conscious.

The store has always prided itself on a personal and stylish shopping experience sourcing and curating collections always aiming to surprise and delight you with distinctive finds for your home and gifts for loved ones.

Pippa Murphy has joined Happiness At Home with a collection of drapery fabrics and accessories that perfectly complement the Happiness at Home style. Jo says: “Pippa and I are excited and proud to be opening our new store in the fabulous Chandlery building. Although COVID restrictions mean we can’t have the launch night we would dearly love, we are planning to hold shopping evenings as soon as possible. To find out more please contact us on joannah@happinesshome.co.uk.”

Not one for ignoring tummy rumblings Mole saw that The Boathouse was right beside Happiness where he would be able to have a little something to eat when that opens. After an energetic row across the river to get here, he knew he would be ready to enjoy the delicious food, carefully sourced from local produce and which can trace back from its roots to the fork.

Owned by Emma and Alex Cole, The Boathouse is the only restaurant in Woodbridge that diners will be able to eat right beside the river. Hearing the river whilst eating is good for Mole’s soul, so when replete he would be ready to end his day in Happiness. Mole skipped back to his boat to make the crossing before dark set in. He couldn’t wait to tell his friends how he followed the twinkling lights across the river to discover Happiness At Home, which is definitely the place he will buy beautiful gifts for them and his home at all times of the year.

This whole area, recently renamed Woodbridge Historic Riverside, is set to become a popular destination.