News and Reviews

News

14th May,2014.

The ewes and lambs, cows and calves are all out in the fields now, with only two cows left to calve.  The Bluebells in Coneybank Wood have been beautiful but are now past their best.  We have five new and very friendly Golden Comet hens to accompany our Marsh Daisies and provide us with big brown eggs as opposed to small white ones.   Two of our Marsh Daisy hens, Marigold and Heather have gone broody and we are taking the opportunity to try hatching some Large Appleyard Ducks for an elderly aquintance whose current ones are nearing the end of their feathered days.  We also have more quail eggs in the incubator, hopefully due to hatch in about a week!

Other exciting news :  Our donkey stall within the old stable barn is now built and the Donkey Sanctuary have declared us officially “Donkey Ready”!  Now we have to wait a few months for our pair of donkeys to be ready to foster.  They will be involved in a number of activities on the farm, so be able to pull a small cart, take pannier bags and of course be happy to be groomed by all ages, and the Donkey Sanctuary will help train them for these things.  Our children are very excited about donkeys (we have been on several training courses together), and we hope that all our visitors will enjoy them and understand a little more about how helpful these lovely animals are still today all over the world.

Also of great excitement is the progress of plans to start Care Farming here on Road Farm, whereby certain individuals with emotional or learning needs get involved with practical activities on the farm as a way of helping them feel better.  We’ve been planning this for some time and are hugely grateful for a grant provided through Buckinghamshire County Council and their Prevention Matters programme, enabling us to proceed with Insurance and to build a website for the Community Interest Company under registration.

31st January 2014

Our two barns are now nearing completion for their restoration: the threshing barn has almost a full complement of weather boards again, but is still awaiting big barn doors to be made.  The stable barn still requires work on the floor, but otherwise they look and are fantastic and RAIN-TIGHT!  We are grateful to live on a hillside with the quantity of rain currently falling and send our condolences for those suffering from floods.

We have six more Saddleback piglets, born in November, still happily snuggling with their mother Pepper.  Lambing has started, thankfully indoors again this year, although the lambs and ewes go back out when they are about a week old.  We have had one lamb, a hen and a cockerel go missing over the last week, so Duncan has set up the trail-cam for fox-spotting and of course we are extra vigilant to shut the hens up at night, especially as they are back in lay (hurray!).

Watch this space for news of DONKEYS!

March 2013: Our Retriever Collie cross dog Tal turned one year old in early February and has adored playing in the recent snow drifts!

We are impatiently awaiting the first eggs from our rare breed Marsh Daisy hens

The British Saddleback Sows Pearl and Primrose produced ten piglets at the end of January 2013!  We would have preferred a few more (pigs can have atleast 12 piglets at a time), but are certainly happy to have these.  They’re growing very fast and have already entertained local school children amongst their visitors.

Restoration of our two big barns is now well under way.  The Listed Threshing Barn currently has no tiles and the wooden frame is largely suspended by scaffolding since the walls beneath had to be removed to enable stronger footings before their re-construction.  The weather has been too cold for bricklaying using lime-mortar, so the builders have been concentrating on the internal woodwork of the adjacent stable barn.  Wendy is building a special “bee-barn” to encourage the various solitary bee species she rescued from the restoration process!

Bee Update, January 2014 We had about 15 bees hatch out and fly last spring.  I’ve got some film which I hope to post.  From my honey bees, last autumn I harvested about 30lbs honey and hope that both colonies will make it through to spring 2014 (as of last week, they were both ok).

Reviews

Many thanks to all our lovely visitors.  There are many kind comments in our visitors book and we thought you may like to see some.  We had 3 sets of wedding guests in 2013 including bridal preparations and honey-moon week-end!

“Lovely, quiet farmhouse style self-catering accommodation. Pretty views and again oh so quiet!!  Few minutes drive to good pubs and villages. Lovely to see sheep grazing and the snowdrops and primroses starting so early in the garden.  Lovely & warm, great central heating, large rooms and comfy beds.  Very enjoyable!”                The L Family from Australia (Our first visitors)

“Thank you for making our daughter Susan’s wedding so special by all the little touches that made our stay here in preparation for it so wonderful.”                             The D family from Bolton

“In preparation for A & Z’s wedding!  So welcoming, comfy and just ideal – thank you. ………wonderful stay!”     The H&P families

“Thank you for making such fabulous Olympic holidays possible!  We’ve had such a wonderful time here – a cosy, quiet house as part of an outstanding beautiful countryside.  We have been made to feel very welcome!  Thank you for all your kindness!…”                                                                                                                The W family from Germany

“Thank you thank you thank you for an absolutely fab holiday.  The facilities are second to none and your friendship and hospitality have been awesome.  From the start of our stay with the lovely welcome pack to the last minute we have thoroughly enjoyed ourselves and are loath to go home!!”                     The T & J families from Manchester

“Thank you for a wonderful stay.  The location was brilliant for the wedding and the numerous bedrooms and bathrooms worked brilliantly with our young family.  Thanks for all the little touches which made the stay very enjoyable…”     The family from Leicester

“What a comfy-cosy-delightfully-characterful house to stay in…it felt very much like being at home while we stayed here, which is a fantastic acheivement and made our holiday enjoyable and relaxing.  Thanks and see you next time we’re in England again.”                                                                                                    The  Family from Perth, Australia

“An idyllic location.  A beautiful home.  So many thoughtful touches making for a very comfortable stay.  Our only disappointment is that we could not have stayed longer.  P.S.  we suggest installing a wifi booster or independant wifi as the current arrangement is unreliable.”                                                                                                                   N & A from Malaysia

Regarding wifi, we have tried to improve arrangements, but are at the mercy of the limited “wired” connection before we boost it on.

“Thank you so much for letting us stay inyour delightful, warm and cosy home!  We had a great timeand noteven the rain could dampen our spirits, and we’ll remember your warm hospitality…we hope to see you again in summer 2013”         J, A, C & S from  Essex