Mrs Potts by the River

Qualified chef Emma dreamed of opening her own place where she could prioritise caring for customers and when her mum found a suitable spot in Botley, she took the plunge and set up Mrs Potts By The River.

This quirky little café has a very unique location, offering seating by the river and in the historic Botley Mills tunnel, complete with fairy lights. Emma prepares all of the food in a hut where she also uses the space to support other businesses, including selling Hampshire honey from a few miles up at the road at no additional profit. All of the cakes and sweet treats are homemade by her, and she opens from Tuesday to Saturday between 9am and 4pm.

Emma, who lives in central Eastleigh, said: “I came to look at the premises and was up and running in a couple of weeks - if I hadn’t taken up the challenge, I would always be thinking ‘I wish I had gone for it’. Lockdown was very hard and I have worked several other jobs to keep going as I needed to pay the bills but I love it here. Customers come to chill out as it’s so peaceful with the ducks and all of the wildlife; we once had a swarm of butterflies. There’s no internet so you have to talk to people!”

Emma’s Borough Gem: “A local business I love is Katarina’s in Eastleigh. I am normally in there for breakfast as that’s the only free time I have. The cocktails are really good too!” 

Mrs Potts Emma Inside

Emma from Mrs Potts by the River