Where does the time go? Sorry for lack of communication since Christmas, I’ve been waiting to give you all news of our new shop (on the left as you come into the yard) but with one thing and another it’s still not quite ready. We’re just waiting for BT now (they were due to connect phone line in November but we’re now looking at March) and there are a few bits of decorating to finish off. I’m a bit wary about giving you all a date but let’s just say we hope to be in there by Easter.
We installed a biomass boiler before Christmas which now provides heat and hot water for the house and workshop. It can take small round straw bales (we’re burning home produced linseed straw at the moment) and whole pallets. The next phase is to supply the new farm shop and cutting room, hopefully later this year. We’re always on the look out for stuff to burn so please let me know if you have anything you want to get rid of (within reason!).
I have to mention the dreadful horse-meat saga that has been all over the news for the last few weeks. As producers we feel let down by the authorities who have allowed this fiasco to happen. What is the point of full “traceability” when you can’t believe what’s on the label anyway and with such a long and convoluted food chain it will be extremely difficult to pin-point blame. We have fresh beef available this week and I can guarantee that it was born at Old Farm and has only been as far as Long Compton. For those of you who have seen our horses out and about we do have one missing but I can assure you “Minty Bubbles” has gone to a lovely family home nearby!
Well, I can’t put it off any longer! I have now put our Christmas Order Forms on the website, please take a look…
There are turkeys and game from Lower Clopton, cockerels and guinea fowl from Great Farm, “The Pie’s the Limit” pork pies, June’s sausage rolls and mince pies, fruit and veg from WR Haines and not forgetting Old Farm gammons, sausage meat, chipolatas and bacon. If you want a smaller turkey then it’s advisable to get your order in as soon as possible as they tend to get booked up first or why not try a cockerel.
Poultry/game will be available for collection from Friday 21st. Other meat will be available from Wednesday.
Christmas Opening Times December 2012:
Weds 19th to Sat 22nd 9.30am-5.00pm
Sun 23rd 9.30am-2.00pm
Mon 24th 9.30am-2.00pm
Fri 28th 9.30am-5.00pm
Sat 29th 9.30am-5.00pm
Mon 31st 9.30am-2.00pm
From Weds 2nd Jan, open as normal.
You can now see footage of the Cotswold Life Food and Drink Awards where we won the “Best Farm Shop” category (this is about 17 minutes into the coverage). We’re wearing DJ’s and posh frocks, not something you see every day. Ours was the loudest table as we’d taken most of our staff to give us some moral support – we’d all been practicing our “oh, I’m really pleased they won” faces just in case. Simon and I hadn’t practiced our winning speech though as we didn’t think we’d have to make one – you’d never guess!! To skip straight to the shortlisted Farm Shop miniclips click here.
We’re thrilled to say that we were announced as winners in the “Best Farm Shop” category at the Cotswold Life Food and Drink Awards on Monday night beating Foxbury Farm and the Duchy Farm Shop no less.
450 highly esteemed guests, finalists and sponsors including Adam Henson, Sir Roddy Llewellyn and Rob Rees MBE joined Cotswold Life to celebrate the 10th Anniversary Cotswold Life Food & Drink Awards at Cheltenham Racecourse.
There were a nail-biting few minutes as the nominations were read out and short films of the finalists were shown on the big screen; when our name was called out we could hardly believe our ears! The Horse & Groom and Cotswold Food Store also won their categories, it was a great night for the North Cotswolds.
The Wiggly Worm, championed by Rob Rees, is a charity that exists to improve health, well-being and self-esteem amongst the vulnerable, disadvantaged or seldom heard. Money was raised on the night and donations can still be made by texting ”WORM12 £xx” to 70070, go to www.thewigglyworm.org.uk for more information about the work they do…
There will be pictures and a full write up in the August edition of the magazine.
We have been thinking for a while about extending our hours and making the opening times easier to remember so from now on we are open:
Wednesday-Saturday 9.30am to 5.00pm
Apologies for any inconvenience, there will be a changeover period over the next few weeks so if you turn up on a Tuesday morning or after 5.00 on Friday just ring the bell and we’ll come and open up for you!
Yes, we do actually make a plan for the day!! Not sure about the weather on Sunday but we have plenty to look at undercover.
*11.00 Gates Open * 11.30 Shearing demo * 12.00 Lamb butchery * 12.30 Sausage making * 1.00 Shearing demo * 2.00 Guided Farm Walk, weather permitting * 3.00 Gates close
Also during the day: *Farm Shop open * Embarassing doggies * WR Haines Veg * Phoenix cards * Chicks hatching * BBQ * Cream teas * June’s cakes * Bee Keeping * Farm trail *
We hope to see you on Sunday, please dress for the weather…
We are delighted to be shortlisted (for the 2nd time) in the Cotswold Life “Best Farm Shop” category. We are up against Foxbury Farm and The Duchy Farm Shop, we might be small but you never know… Whatever happens we will have a good night out on July 2nd when the winners will be announced. May the best farm shop win!!!
Sheep Shearing, Sausage Making, Bee Keeping, Dog Training, Pig Knitting, Farm Walking, Eggs Hatching,
Livestock Viewing, Hog Roasting, Tea & Caking, Tyre Kicking, Wildlife Watching…
11 am to 3pm
Dogs welcome: on leads please
You may have noticed Simon ploughing in the Fosse Field and Batsford Corner last week, it took about 12 hours to complete the 17 hectares. The new drill Simon bought from a neighbouring farmer made the job a lot faster than our old one which only allowed us to travel at 6-8 km/h, at 12-15km/h he was done in half the time and the tractor used less fuel too so it should pay for itself in about 20 years! It is now planted with linseed, watch out for the beautiful blue flowers over the summer.
A big welcome to Sarah Mann who joined the Old Farm team this week. Sarah will be at the farm Monday to Friday and has already got the hang of sausage linking! Fiona will still be in the shop on Thursday and Friday mornings but will probably be grateful for some help as we are starting to get quite busy at these peak times.
Monday 23rd is St George’s Day and the start of the Great British Beef Week. Francis Green, The Cotswold Traiteur, has made us a tasty Provençal Daube of Beef (with our beef of course) and it will be in the shop from Tuesday. If you want some new recipes to try at home why not go to the British Beef Week website for some tasty ideas.
Lambing is nearly over now and we have had more than 300 so far, just another 40 ewes left… There were a couple of new calves too last week, one no bigger than BB!
We will be open as normal over the Easter weekend – Thursday 9.30 to 1.00; Friday 9.30 to 6.30 & Saturday 9.30 to 5.00.
Please feel free to come and see the lambs if you are coming to the shop and there are some lovely Gloucestershire Old Spot gilts out in the front paddock. We have just put one of our Glamrock boars in with them so hopefully we will be hearing the patter of tiny trotters in a few months time, well, 3 months, 3 weeks and 3 days to be exact!
We went to the Foodex exhibition on Monday last weekat the NEC just to have a look around and came back with a pig roaster (we really shouldn’t be allowed out together!). We are planning to hire it out complete with pig, staff optional, please contact us if you’d like more details. We will be roasting a pig for Farm Sunday (17th June) so you can see it in action.