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My Favourite Places: Daphne Selfe

The utterly gorgeous Daphne Selfe, Herts’ own supermodel, will be taking to the local catwalk at Hitchin’s Festiwool this weekend .  She’s also been busy out and about talking about her new book – a fab memoir of her lifelong love of clothes and fashion, The Way We Wore.  (Don’t you just love that title?)


In between all that busy-ness, I managed to catch a few minutes with Daphne to ask her about her favourite places.  After 7 decades (yes, decades) as a model, she’s been a place or 2 in her time, but lots of her favourites are closer to home than you might imagine.  Dear heavens, though, I hope I look that good in my 50s, never mind my 80s.  But the chance of that, going on current progress, is slim to are-you-having-a-laugh.  Hey ho.


daphne baldock

Baldock, where I live, is actually my favourite place as it is a friendly town with easy travel to London and other surrounding towns.  It still has small proper shops, Chapmans the fantastic butchers, cafes, several charity shops that supplement my wardrobe, and all within walking distance of my house—especially good as I can’t drive now!  Café ‘Taste’ serves wonderful smoked salmon and cream cheese beigles!   Also, you can walk into the countryside in minutes.

St Ives

daphne st ives

Apart from where I live, St. Ives in Cornwall is my favourite place which I have been visiting regularly since the 1950’s.  Renowned for its special light that has always attracted artists, I love going back there to see what my artist friends are doing, visit the galleries, walk around the cobbled streets and on the coastal paths drinking in the sea air and marvelling at the blue sea and golden sands.  I know all the back streets so even when it is full of tourists I can avoid most of them!   I always come home feeling refreshed.

The Brewery Tea Rooms, Walkern

daphne brewery

Locally one of my favourite cafes is The Brewery Tea Rooms at Walkern.   There you can have really good coffee with wonderful home-made cakes and pastries, then browse amongst the small tables at the rear of the shop to find all sorts of presents and knick-knacks for birthdays or Christmas or suchlike.  All served by happy friendly people who want you to enjoy yourself!  My other favourite tea room is at Hexton, in the old village hall – again, serving tea in proper china cups like Walkern, and it too has an amazing ‘Aladdin’s Cave’ on the premises selling all sorts of presents, even clothes that are ‘just what you always wanted.’   I never come home empty handed from either of these!


daphne london

I also love London, where I go for guided walks to explore the history of this great city as well as going about in the normal way.   I never tire of London – there’s always some interesting building or alley or theatre that I have never seen before.  It changes all the time so you can never say ‘Oh, I’ve seen that or been there.’   I love going to the theatre, cinema, exhibitions, and lectures. There are never enough days in the week!  Black cabs are the best – so much room and they always know where they are going!

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The Urban Guide to the Countryside - Hertfordshire