• 2015

    Well it's been a while again. It's not that I don't have anthing to share - it's that I don't have the time to share it!!

    We have started 2015 well and despite not planning to open until April 1st we have already had a number of visitors to the farm - Valentines day walks, birthday parties, a hen party and our fantastic Mother's Day Afternoon Tea which was a roaring success. We will be repeating this for Mother's Day 2016 and are toying with the idea of doing something for Father's Day........ just not sure what!

    We have also just had our rare breed free range pork back and sold the majority of it via pre-orders. We have some left in the freezer and the bacon and gammon (which has to be cured) will be ready for our Easter Open Day on Friday 3rd. It really is delicious and I won't buy pork from the supermarket ever again. The feed back has been excellent and I'm especially pleased with the sausages this time. They have prevoiusly been ground too finely for my liking and the butcher has hand ground and hand mixed them this time to get them to the coarseness we required. They are delicious!

    We sold the last of our pet male Alpacas last week and are now down to 25 alpacas which are all breeding stock.

    We are nearing the end of March and April brings the first of our rare breed lambs - something we are slightly nervous about! Alpacas are very convenenient in that they usually give birth during the morning, never during the night unless there is a problem. Sheep seem to do whatever they want and I for one are not good at night time! James and Amy will be on nighttime watch (they don't know that yet!). Our Manx Loaghtan ewes will give birth to adorable little black/brown lambs and the Greyface Dartmoor will product white curly poodle like lambs. I can't wait to cuddle them as we tend to take a step back with the alpaca cria so as to not over handle them and increase the risk of beserk camelid behavoiur when they become adults.

    We also have our pygmy goats, Heidi and Helga due to give birth from the middle of April onwards. They were with Elvis, the billy, for 6 weeks so could give birth anytime from the middle of April until the end of May but looking at the size of them I think it will be sooner rather than later!

    We had hoped that Peppa, our Berkshire Sow, was going to produce piglets this week but looking at her there is no sign of piglets which is a bit sad. We wonder if her breeding years are over in which case she will stay as the most delightful attraction for our visitors. She really is a hit as she is so friendly. But that means there may not be any more free range pork this year.........!

    Our Easter Open Day is the first of only two that we are planning this year and will have the usual home made cakes for sale, an Easter Egg hunt, easter craft activities for the children and a needlefelting demo from me. I have found needlefelting so enjoyable - I'm not artistic so worried I wouldn't be able to do it but if I have a picture I can needlefelt it. It's so rewarding and easy to do and I have put some kits together to make 3 flower brooches (a tulip, daffodil and poppy) for £6.99 and kits to make an alpaca for £12.99. We will have the bacon and gammon and the rest of the joints and sausages for sale from our rare breed pigs.

    Weekends at the farm are getting very busy and we are just about fully booked until the end of May. We are hoping to have some help around the farm at weekends as there is so much to do. We want to keep our farm as a private, peaceful, family run farm where the animals are calm and live in environments as close to their natural habitats as possible, but as a family run business we can only stretch so far so the extra help will mean we can concentrate on our animals and our visitors. We don't want to get so busy that we lose the special feeling that so many people comment on here so don't will keep some days as private family days and focus our visits on certain days of the weeks. So the way our week runs is:

    Monday, Wednesdays we are usually closed to visits (although we can be persuaded for special visits)

    Tuesday afternoons once or twice a month are for prebooked alpaca walks

    Thursdays during term time we are open for elevensies and afternoon tea but must be pre-booked.

    Friday mornings are for alpaca expreriences (pre booked)

    Saturday mornings we are closed but open in the afternoon for private parties or alpaca experiences.

    Sunday mornings from 11 and afternoors until 5 we are open for private parties or alpaca experiences and twice a month on a Sunday afternoon we will host a group alpaca walk

    We will host a Mother's Day afternoon tea every year, and open days on Good Friday and Open Farm Sunday (usually the first Sunday in June). We will have occasional open days for free range pork and lamb sales and hope to have a winter Christmas walk with mulled wine and mince pies in November/December time. All dates will be added to our website and facebook page as they are decided.

    Keep getting in touch with ideas for visits - we are open to any suggestions and love doing something a little different. We will adapt and personalise visits wherever possible to make your ideas a reality. We love a challenge!

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