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Author: Linda Reader

Farm diary – Autumn 2015

Well, summer has left us now and we will soon be thinking of bringing our cattle into the sheds for the winter. The fields are getting quite wet and we don’t want to spoil the pastures for the next season’s grass. For those who have regularly read our Farm News you will know that we are always looking forward to the next season and how much influence the weather has on our timing decisions.

We have plenty of feed for our cows and calves coming in for the winter, but as I write we are awaiting a delivery of barley straw which we use for bedding. Hopefully this will come soon! We buy our straw from ‘up country’ as the soil conditions in this area are not good for growing cereal crops. We usually have an articulated lorry load of big bale straw which is dispensed into the cow cubicles with our very ancient straw chopper tractor!

Straw chopper tractor

Last month our cows were pregnancy tested and we were delighted to know that 85% of them are in calf – due February 2016 onwards. Our pedigree stock bull, Jofrey Hans had done his job, but sadly, as his daughters are due to come into the herd next year; we have had to sell him.

Lambs

When he came to us he was only 16 months old and completely ‘untried’ but he certainly proved his worth with a lovely crop of calves born earlier this year. Let’s hope the calves born next year will be as good. Jofrey Hans has gone back to the breeder we bought him off and will continue to be hired out as a stock bull.

It will soon be time for the sheep to be brought to us for the winter. In order to keep the grass in the field ‘mowed’ we have another farmer’s sheep here for several months. They are usually ‘in-lamb’ ewes that come here prior to giving birth, although sometimes we have early lambs born here which we love to see!

Swift Owners Club Rally – June 2015

We hosted a wonderfully organised 10 day Holiday Rally for the Swift Owners Club. Held in our rally field, 28 caravans attended, there was even a waiting list! The Rally was efficiently marshalled by Elaine & Colin Baker with Maureen and Ron Ward as co-marshals.

There were activities such as enjoying a cream tea, a visit to the Eden Project, a Rally meal at a local pub and a ploughman’s supper. As we are centrally located, there was lots of time during the Rally to visit beautiful Devon & Cornwall.

For many Ralliers this was their first time to the area and the consensus was ‘we didn’t realise there was so much to do and see’!

Headon Hoedown!

To celebrate the development of our storage at Headon, and as a thank you to the loyalty of our wonderful clients, Friend of Headon, we held a fun day – the Headon Hoedown! The theme was a country fair.

The morning of the Hoedown and the skies were grey however, a wonderful posse of volunteers helped ‘set up’ and by the afternoon the weather had improved considerably.

We had various races on the track, egg & spoon, three-legged and sack race. The dressing up races were hilarious! Also going on were Welly Wanging, Horseshoe throwing, a coconut shy, face painting and a colouring competition.

The afternoon flowed with the help of John Lawrence from Tarka Radio, whose outside broadcast unit played appropriate songs for the activities. We were also lucky to have a steel drum workshop which was laid in by the Celebrations Ceilidh band (who played for us in the evening).

Several people were able to try their hands at playing the steel drums and very quickly were able to perform a tune!

In the evening we adjourned to the Barn for the evening’s entertainment – a ceilidh with a caller! Everyone joined in the cowboy/cowgirl competition and there were prizes for the best dressed adults and juniors.

The table with the bring and share supper was groaning with wonderful food ! The ceilidh was great fun and everyone was encouraged to have a go by Christine from the Celebrations Ceilidh bank who made the steps very easy.

Donations were generously given and we were able to give £160 to Devon Air Ambulance Trust (See certificate) and £160 to Tarka Radio at North Devon District Hospital.

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