Audley End is a Jacobean stately home owned by English Heritage. Its kitchen garden looks much as it would have done in late Victorian times, full of vegetables, fruits, herbs and flowers. It is cultivated organically (Soil Association certified), the produce ending up in the English Heritage shop on site. Audley End
There are three garden areas – the Historic Garden, the 21st Century Garden, the Orchard.
The 21st Century garden is situated behind the back sheds. It has been developed to display the modern methods used in organic gardening. The side borders have been designed to provide a habitat for a diverse range of wildlife, especially butterflies. The central compartment has a grass and clover lawn with a lavender hedge.
Abbey Home Farm, near Cirencester, Gloucestershire, offers day cheese making courses: learnabout the various cultures & methods used to make a variety of cheeses, also discuss butter & yoghurt production. All methods shown can be easily adapted for home production. The soft cheese you make will be ready to collect 2-3 weeks later to enjoy at home (delivered by post). Held in the creamery at Abbey Home Farm. large organic farm shop and camping is also available. £60 inc light organic lunch. Postage of cheese extra. Basic pitches (compost loo and cold water tap) from £4/night.
Note: Organic Producer of the Year 1999 “Unhomogenized milk, yoghurt, cream and cheese straight from our 15 shorthorns on the farm. All our own bacon, beef, lamb, pork, ham and chicken.Eggs warm from the hens, honey from the bees and ready meals from our production kitchen”. Visit site
Soup with alexanders & lesser celandine.
Interesting course on gathering and cooking wild foods. The Wild Food School in Cornwall offer 2-day, day and half-day courses in which students can gain hands-on experience in identifying and using as many as 90 odd edible wild plants in the UK. There are also guided walks on the subject. Looks great fun.
“Ever eaten nettles? Or even some of the edible thistles? Well how about telling your friends that you’ve become a wild food gourmet, eating those edible weeds chickweed and bulrush, and know all about finding and cooking food from the wild? If that’s the sort of thing that tickles your fancy, then Wild Food School courses are probably the sort of thing that will capture your imagination…” .
Note: the courses are run by Ethnobotanist-Forager Marcus Harrison, author of a series of wild food cookbooks who has had an interest in wild foods for over 30 years. Prices: Day and Introductory courses – £30-85 pp. / W/E & 2-day courses – £160 pp.
Visit The Wild Food School
Beech Hill Farm is an organically run 20 acre small farm with rare breed sheep. The farm is set in the unspoilt countryside of the Sussex High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. 4 4tar ETC rated self-catering accommodation is available. “You can visit Beech Hill Farm by yourself for a rural retreat or with friends: there is the Studio, The Coach House” In 2004 Beech Hill Farm won two Awards; SEEDA Sustainable Business Award for Resource Efficiency and BETRE Green Action Award for their Rain-Harvesting Scheme in 2005 Beech Hill Farm took part in the RSPB Farm and Volunteer Alliance Scheme and have recorded over 50 varieties of birds including a number on the Red and Amber list for endangered species.