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A gateway to the future...

Part one of a larger project (TBA!) has been completed and we're very pleased with it!

It's taken some planning to get to this stage but our vision for this project is nicely coming together! We will have more news on that soon (hopefully before Christmas)! Part one of the project involves the division of one of our fields (Rushy Field) into two parts, and the linking together of that field, with another (Orchard Meadow), with a double gate!

The Rushy Field has been divided into two parts; a top and a bottom, using a new fence interspersed with three gateways! The immediate impact of this is that we can now graze the top half whilst protecting the flora of the bottom half, which is a lovely bank of wild flowers in the spring / summer.

We will still want to graze the bottom half, but in a more controlled manner. By putting the gateways in there, we can give livestock access to the bottom half and the beck as and when required. Two of the three gates in the new fence are 12' gates... one at each end.

On one end the gate opens onto an old track which runs down to a lovely part of LambWatch HQ, past a bank of flowers (in spring / summer) and gorse bushes, into a sheltered little valley covered by beech trees, which, at this time of year, is a carpet of crisp bronze beech leaves. It continues onto a ford (crossing) in the beck (stream), at the head of a series of quaint little waterfalls, and then up the other side of the valley. It really is a lovely spot.

At the other end of the new fence, there is another 12' gate which gives access to the same area at the other side, where it slopes down to the same beck but further upstream. A perfect little watering hole!

Half way (ish) along the fence, is a small pedestrian gate, which we needed to put in, as the fence crosses a footpath. It looks great and will help ensure that walkers stick to the footpath rather than wander aimlessly looking for the footpath.

One side effect of the fence means of couse that the top half of the field, if all gates are closed, no longer has access to the beck. For this reason we had to ensure a water supply to the top half. We've extended an existing ditch a few feet, inserted a pipe at the end so it reaches the Rushy Field and built a dry stone wall around it so it looks natural and in-keeping. The overflow is directed back into its original course. It's a wonderfully sympathetic water supply and looks like it's been there for years!

Finally, we added a double gate into the top boundary of the Rushy Field with the Orchard Meadow. This means we now have a large additional access into the field, as well as an easy extension to the amount of grazing in the Rushy Field as and when required in the same way we can extend into the bottom half of the Rushy Field. It looks great though we still need to do some work on this boundary and on the slope leading up to it.

Here's the story in pictures...!

The materials arrive

Lynda's doing a grand job modelling the new fencing materials!

The materials arrive at HQ

The machines arrive!

All those fencing posts take some embedding; a machine makes it a lot easier!

The machines arrive

In go the posts!

The first step is to get those posts in the ground in lines sympathetic with the field contours.

In go the fencing posts In go the fencing posts In go the fencing posts

Attach the wire!

Attach the wire nice and tight. Note we're not using barbed wire.... Look at that flowering thistle, in November!

Attach the stock fence wire! Attach the stock fence wire! Attach the stock fence wire!

Hang the gates!

Making sure they swing nice and freely!

Hang the gates Hang the gates Hang the gates Hang the gates

Providing water

One of the five freedoms: Provide fresh water to keep animals healthy! What are the five freedoms? The sluice gate higher up is currently closed as we don't need it to run just yet! You can see the sluice gate in the pic: it's that slightly orange square just above the wall line. Lift that, and the water flows like the Serengeti floods!

Water supply

Doubling up!

Our double gates will provide additional access and even more grazing if required. Look at that lovely holly bush laden with berries... It must be Christmas!

Doubling up! Doubling up!


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Brilliant job Dan & co. Little did we Lambwatchers know what you were doing in the background for the future of the farm. At first reading, it all sounds a bit complicated (must have a second and third reading) Great photos too to illustrate all the work you've been doing and I liked the reference to the thistle and holly bush ..... I may not have noticed them if you hadn't pointed them out. I can't wait to hear what is to come in the weeks to come.

It all looks and sound's very interesting

looks very good alot of work

Looks really nice someone did a good job