I must have been having a down day when a colleague suggested we hold an event to celebrate our 10th anniversary. “Celebrate? What’s to celebrate?!”

Ten years of the longest hours we’ve ever worked, very few holidays, blah, blah blah, you get the picture.

But upon reflection and on a slightly less menopausal day, I realised there is much to celebrate on reaching this milestone as a small business.

In December 2008, we opened Wild Thyme, a small intimate 35 cover restaurant with three rooms above for bed and breakfast, in Chipping Norton.

It was the height of the recession, so probably not our best move, but Nick was desperate to have his own place, a dream of 20 years, and I was desperately in love with the idea, and him.

We chased our tails financially from the start. Self-funded, we overspent on the start-up costs and had a list of creditors by the time we opened six weeks later. We also underestimated the costs, (note to all new small businesses; everything, and I mean everything, will cost more than you expect.)

I had never known financial pressure until then. I recall a businessman telling me that he spent the first ten years thinking he was going bust, the next ten paying off the debt, and only really made money in the last five.

Ten years in, things are a little easier financially, but the margins are still tight as a small independent restaurant offering good quality food.

We are constantly thinking about whether we should look for larger premises to make the maths work better.

Another big issue has been working so closely with my partner, Nick. His desire for perfection is the main ingredient in the success of Wild Thyme.

But as a strong Taurean woman I have not always played second fiddle well, and we still rut up against one another at times.

From the start, locals responded well to Wild Thyme and the people we’ve met and friendships we’ve secured have made this experience for us and kept us going through the tough times.

And so, this Saturday, we will be holding a party in our local Town Hall with 110 friends of Wild Thyme, to celebrate our small local business. We will eat Nick’s wonderful food and new local business Very Vanilla will launch a spectacular indulgence bar of sweet things made by the charming Daisy Pratt.

We shall dance the night away to local five-piece band The Fuss and raise a glass of fizz to surviving near bankruptcy, the people that have worked with us, our great local producers, still being married and to all the happy memories we have yet to create in the decade to come and hopefully beyond.

Wild Thyme, 10 New Street Chipping Norton, OX7 5LJ

Tel: 01608 645060. wildthymerestaurant.co.uk