Archive for the ‘North Devon Events’ Category

Don your sword and chain mail to defend yourself against George the Dragon guarding his treasures along the ‘Middle Earth’ fun JRR Tolkien themed trail in the RHS Rosemoor gardens. Also this month of June ‘Meet the Pollinators’ talks and demos. Children’s play area includes a ship and large musical tubular bells. New gardens and woodland area have extended this fabulous garden. OK to picnic in the gardens but look out for Dragons who have been feasting on the real ales and ciders at a 3 day weekend festival from 6th June when local micro breweries and cider makers will be gathering to offer samples.

North Devon farm holidays guests should brace themselves – there are holiday adventures of all kinds.

George the Dragon


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Discover the Gardens and Period homes of North Devon this Easter

Attractions this year include 3 wonderful Gardens and period houses. Visitors to our beautiful North Devon Farms holiday accommodation are valued guests and made welcome at the following gardens.
Castle Hill Gardens: Woodland gardens with follies and temples set in 18th century parkland, Summer Millennium Garden, herbaceous boarders. Vistas, grass terraces and statues leading sown to a river and Triumphal Arch. Accommodation in this area is Townhouse Barton http:// http://www.townhousebarton.co.uk.
Another newly opened garden and period home is Fursdon House, an elegant Jacobean house with Regency interior. Home of the Fursdon family for more than 750 years. Fantastic views, grounds and lovely walled gardens. Delicious homebaking in the Coach Hall. You can stay here at Fursdon in any of the 3 cottages. http://www.fursdon.co.uk
Thirdly there is Hartland Abbey and Gardens in a stunning valley leading to the sea, former monastery given by Henry 8th to present day ancestors, wonderful architecture, woodland and wildflower walks to beach. Light lunches. Location of the film’ Sense and Sensibility’ nearby North Devon farm holiday stay is Dunsdon Farm

All visitors to the North Devon farms are so welcome they give strength and support to our rural communities.

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One hundred and fifty farmers who are members of the Devon Farms group gathered at Bicton College near Newton Poppleford today to raise their glasses to the 25 years they have been in operation. Lectures on Dog trialling by David Kennard, flowering arranging, felting and spinning demonstrations had visitors totally involved.  Outside the college visitors also enjoyed Shire Horse drawn cart rides around the lake. Many other members brought and showed a wide range of products made on their farms to demonstrate how different farms have diversified.  The weather was superb, the atmosphere light and jolly, altogether a brilliant day.  Can you imagine the farmhouse spread at lunchtime? Mmmmm.

Thank you to the Devon Farms committee led by Jackie Milsom of Little Comfort Farm, Braunton and Martin Ryall from Hollacombe Farm near Combe Martin who coordinated the whole day’s activities, lunches and stands.

See next blog for a photo of the day.

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Rightly famous for its scenic wonder, the North Devon coast and rolling farmlands were a target of holidaymakers before cars because railways were the main route to such holiday delights.  True the railways aren’t what they were but there are still many scenic miles to enchant the traveller.

 West Somerset Railway has a fleet of powerful steam locomotives.  The Railway’s  ‘Spring Gala’ this weekend features a range of visiting and home fleet locos.  A packed timetable allows guests to travel behind a selection of steam trains – other activities include turntable demos, shunts, book signings. This will be great!  Not only to see a piece of locomotive history but to hear and smell these sulphurous steeds make their way from Bishops Lydeard to Minehead.  North Devon Farms accommodation in the area is: B&B at Harton Farm, an comfortable old stone farmhouse with hearty meals and Gold Award for Green Tourism. Try Lindy on www.hartonfarm.co.uk  Also try Newhouse Farm for a treat of country life, four-poster beds and a dining award – try Anne at www.newhouse-farm-holidays.co.uk or for a short break self-catering on the farm try Wonham Barton where doggy is also welcome

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The North Devon Farm Holiday Group hope you’ve got your walking boots ready for the North Devon and Exmoor Walking Festival which takes place on the 27th April – 6th May 2013 http://www.exmoorwalkingfestival.co.uk

Most of the North Devon Farm Holiday Group bed and breakfasts & self catering accommodation are either situated on or near to some of the wonderful walking trails in North Devon and Exmoor. For example, Huxtable Farm B&B, near West Buckland http://www.huxtablefarm.co.uk/walkingandcycling is situated on the Tarka Trail and Macmillan Way, just the right distance from Barnstaple or Simonsbath for a days walk. Luggage transfer, packed lunches, flask top ups, drying facilities & Radox for a relaxing bath can all be provided so that you enjoy a memorable walk.

Many of the North Devon Farm Holiday Group accommodation providers also have their own walk trails around their farmland, through hidden wooded valleys, lined with wild flowers, off the beaten track.


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ImageThose who saw BBC’s Countryfile last week get a second chance next Sunday 27th January at 12:25pm. Set the video if out having a pub lunch. Well worth a second viewing, or constant rewind, just to be whisked back across the dramatic Exmoor countryside by a fabulous pair of Black Shires romping through the country lanes reliving the scenes played out in RD Blackmore’s Lorna Doone.  The horses pull a magnificent Landau carriage sending you back to the 1680s.  The exhilaration can be felt as the pounding hooves of the Shires and the wheels of the carriage on the lanes trace the ghost of Lorna Doone.  Its all tremendously atmospheric and the scenes through the Valley of the Rocks near Lynton are positively beckoning.

Tourists inspired by the Countryfile adventure across Exmoor can join in themselves.  No experience necessary.  These Heavy Horses are owned by Jonathan ( featured driving the carriage) and Fiona Waterer who offer the horses for a wide variety of fun days. This includes driving lessons, romps over Exmoor and even taking the bride to church. Bed and Breakfast at their Higher Biddacott Farm is a real treat after which you can watch the horses in their daily work on the farm.  see  www.heavy-horses.net  Stay on the farm and learn to drive single pairs or for the brave, a team of horses.  Tuition is tailor made to the individual and unforgettable.

At the 100 acre New Hill Farm horse riding along the Lyn River over the moors and around the coast is available for continued adventure holidays. Susan Bingham has ponies for all abilities. There are three self-catering cottages with views acoss Exmoor. See www.outovercott.co.uk  There are hard hats, instruction and accompanied rides.

Also ideally placed on the edge of Exmoor and for exploring and trekking the moors and North Devon coast – by foot – is Hollacombe Farm.  A newly converted self-catering barn  just perfect to put up your feet and join the fated Lorna Doone in cosy surroundings. Ring Celia and Martin or contact them at www.hollacombefarm.co.uk




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The English Sheepdog trial returns to North Devon on 19th, 20th and 21st of July 2013 at Castle Hill in Filleigh home of the Earl and Countess of Arran.  The success of the 2009 event has made a lasting impact in North Devon. The three day event will draw several thousand visitors as well as the competitors and their talented dogs.

Mole Vally Farmers, suppliers to the north devon farming community are sponsors of the 2013 trials.  Across the 3 day event are Sheepdog trials, loads of entertainment and a large Country Fayre with good local food.

The Devon Farms accommodation group of B&Bs and Self-Catering cottages are favoured as the main accommodation providers for this event.  Not only are these great places to stay as they always offer something special to visitors but they can also provide bags of space for the trial dogs to exercise.  South Molton farms near Filleigh are ready to help. Providing memorable stays are: Townhouse Barton, a 15th century farmhouse for B&B or offer a self catering cottage see:  www.townhousebarton.co.uk or nearby West Down Farm who welcome dogs see: www.westdown-devon.co.uk  .  Awarded Gold for an outstanding breakfast and mentioned in the Doomsday book is Kerscott Farm see: www.devon-bandb.co.uk also near the event is North Lee Holiday Cottages who offer short breaks in their 5 cottages on this dairy farm and who also welcome dogs.  See www.northlee.com  Another Gold Award accommodation is a 300 acre family run farm with 3 cottages fitted to high standard and have dogs to stay is Drewstone Farm see: www.devonself-catering.co.uk   Make a note in your new 2013 diary and book ahead.

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