Friday, May 29, 2009

Save Our Roof - The Fordhall Farmhouse Roof Fund.

By now many of you will have received your letter, or maybe seen the appeal on our website..... Anyway... We need your help to save the Fordhall Community Land Initiatives most valuable capital asset....The Farmhouse Roof!
The roof is in urgent need of repair as moisture ingress is now causing serious structural damage. The roof needs to be repaired as soon as possible to ensure that the building will not deteriorate any further and to allow repairs inside to begin.
Fordhall Farmhouse is such a beautiful building and one day we hope to fully restore it to its former glory. Renovating the roof is the first vital step in ensuring the Fordhall Community Land Initiative’s (FCLI) most valuable capital asset remains this way.

Owned by the Fordhall Community Land Initiative and its shareholders, the farmhouse is rented to the Hollins family and is an integral part of the farm’s history. Parts of it are over 200 years old and the interior still retains the beauty of bygone ages. The farmhouse has seen so much throughout the years from the birth of Arthur’s mother in the rooms upstairs, to the days in which Fordhall existed as a country club. Let’s not allow it to go to ruins and be spoilt forever. This is a hugely valuable project and worth pulling together for.
Any donation however small (or large!) is fantastic. It soon adds up! This can be done easily via Paypal on our website.
A huge thank you must go to all the people that have already donated towards this important cause.
Thank you.
Jack Tavernor, Board member and chairman of the Building sub group

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

The Adventures of George ...Part Two

After all the excitement of my first blog last week I thought I had better write the world another.........
This week (after the recovery of my words being published on the World Wide Web) I decided to take it easy and indulge in a spot of relaxing reading - my literature of choice? Why the 'Fordhall Newsletter' of course!
The newsletter arrived in the office on Tuesday and all day yesterday and today volunteers have been eagerly stuffing newsletters into envelopes in order to send them out on time to supporters. I have, of course, had many of my photographs published in that too, so decided that today was the perfect time to take some time out and read through it ('s very good!)

See you this time next week.

(This blog has been written with a bit of help from Hannah - my hooves just aren't good for typing!)

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The Adventures of George.....

Welcome to our new feature....The adventures of George!
George is our resident Cade lamb at Fordhall Farm (Cade= left by it's mother at birth and had to be bottle fed.) He is often up to no good but also likes to take an active part in farmyard life and observe whatever is happening.So...over to George...

'Hi there. Yesterday I watched Ben and the vet testing the cows for TB. It was very interesting to watch and I learnt a lot! I even learnt how it is tested. Maybe they will let me have a go next year......
Firstly the animal is identified (by its ear tag) and its identification recorded (Charlotte helped with this bit.) Then two injection sites are selected in the middle third of the side of the neck, one above the other, separated by about 13cm. Hair is then clipped around the sites to a radius of about 2cm (it's all very technical) Next a fold of skin at both sites is measured with calipers and the measurements recorded (Charlotte was extremely busy writing all these bits and bobs down)Then tuberculin is injected into the skin and the upper site is used for the avian tuberculin.
This is all I saw yesterday but I was informed by Ben that the next stage is that 72 hours later, the vet will return, confirm the animals identity and measure the same fold of skin at both sites and records the thickness of the skin fold. Then the results are known'
What a great day, I love helping out. Hmmmm...I wonder what i will get up to next? Watch this space.......!

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Dawn Chorus Walk sets the standard

Last Saturday (2nd May) Fordhall Farm hosted a Dawn Chorus Walk as part of International Dawn Chorus Day run by the Wildlife Trusts. The walk was guided by local bird twitcher and volunteer Paul Rutter and was very well attended.

I have to say that getting up at 5am to hear the birds sing was not my idea of a relaxing Saturday morning! But, it was actually a wonderful event. Paul did a fantastic job of identifying the individual calls out of a mass of bird chorus - something which amazed me every time...

We walked around the diverse woodlands at Fordhall, the spring fed pools, and the wetlands (the photo shows one of the many rookeries we have on the farm). There was no escape! A full list of the birds spotted will appear in the newsletter, I can't remember them all here.

The success of the event (always held in May as this is when the birds sing their little hearts out in a bid to find a mate and define boundaries) has led to discussions for larger events in 2010. We would like to do a family walk with camping the night before, and a open public walk with a Fordhall cooked breakfast at the end. So, if you missed the walk in 2009, there will be another chance next year!

Of course, if you are keen, you can always pop down to Fordhall yourself one early morning this month. But, please book this in before you arrive.