Monday, 4 June 2018

Campsite is Open

Campsite opened half-term week and some lovely families have enjoyed our green and pleasant land at Ludgvan. The camping paddock has been busy with bikes and surfboards and footballs, children, barbeques and campfires.
Great start to the season. A couple of guests even turned up the night before we opened and tested the Camping Cabin and campsite out as a fore-runner to the season.....cheeky!

Campers have arrived at night and disappeared off to the beach or biking during the day
and enjoyed the walk down to the pub in the evenings, which takes less than 5 minutes.
The changing-room has been restocked with a library of cornish books and cornish stories for campers to borrow. If you like books, cornish or otherwise, Penzance and St Ives have some great book shops, often with signed copies.

The sheep have moved back into the field adjacent to camping paddock
and the ewes and lambs and rams have been checked for fly-strike and clipped around their tails to reduce the risk. We await the shearer coming mid June - should have booked him earlier........
The grass is greening up a little and the fields looking more lush, so the horses have had a bit of extra grass to eat too.
Not to be left out, the 'team of boys' have been having fun in the sun, adapting the go-kart and turning it into a lawnmower trailer

All aboard the skylark!
 And the campers and I have enjoyed alfresco meals with a view
The campsite is open and it really feels like summer is here!

Thursday, 24 May 2018

May Mayhem of Mad Activity

May has just completely turned into a mayhem of mad activity. But let us start with the serene picture of calm as paddleboarding club started for the youngest member of our campsite team - now 15 -
and Breathe.......
and sing......."The Farmer wants a wife, the farmer wants a wife, eeii eeii the farmer wants a wife,
The wife wants a son, the wife wants a son, eeii eeii the wife wants a son,
The son wants a tractor shed.........................."

and so the mayhem of mad activity began,

firstly with improvements to our driveway in, some hardcore was laid, for us, for our campers and for Southwest Water lads and lassies, who share our driveway (hence the green fence and grassy mound that protect us a bit from that southwest wind and keep footballs and tennis balls within our boundry!)

No more mud to negotiate...hoorah!

But then the boy wanted a tractor shed for his old Leyland. Ridiculous!
However, upon reflection it probably wasn't such a bad idea, it could be used for the campsite mower and for wood storage and for sheep pens in lambing season, instead of ousting the horses from their shelter....must remember to leave room for the tractor.
It will be a long project but it has started and phase one foundations completed, so we are tidy for the summer.
A little behind schedule because of inclement weather and an unprecedented amount of sea mist creeping in, over from the north coast this year, but heyho!
The mayhem of activity then continued because we needed some improvements, a new shower unit was required this year and the wood needed bleaching
and a couple of requests last year asked for the sink area to be a little raised and also for a washing up area. We always reflect on your suggestions and if we think they are appropriate for the campsite and won't detract from our "wildness" then we act on them.
A replacement hammock and the planter at the bottom of our drive needed repainting,
There was a spell of agricultural distraction as the farmer in the family had to nip off for silage making with some large machines and night time activity
Looked like monster trucks incorporated!
There have been other distractions of course, an abundance of animal husbandry chores and playing with kelpies, in the name of training

And there was our cabin to sort and make ready as an alternative to camping with a tent

But we are now ready for campers, I think ...and open May 25th for the season.

Hoping to see you soon..........

Sunday, 1 April 2018

First lambs

Our first lambs have been born. One, in the worst of the snow storm nights, lovely little Portland ewe lamb we are calling Snowflake and she is a beaut! Born in the field, in the snow, poor little might, but she survived and was swiftly tucked up with mum in a straw filled stable, as soon as we discovered her.
Water, mud and snow may have put back our opening time from Easter to May because the grass and driveway are just not ready to accept customers, but it has not stopped our lambing.

Apologies to all those who believe in purebred lambing, but we have crossed our Portland ram Moonlight with a couple of our Zwartble ewes this year, to see whether this crossbreeding enhances the flavour and quality of the meat. Never fear though, the Portland ewe lambs have been retained as purebreeds.
Not a bad year for our tiny flock, triplets, twins and a single Portland and the triplet ewe seems to be feeding all three without any supplements.
Have been a bit 'soft' and kept them in the stables for a couple of weeks and overnight for a few more nights, more to give them a bit more of a start and help the ewe with triplets to produce enough milk, before turning them out to face our wet and furious weather.
Put them in the sheltered reservoir garden for a few days, to crop the grass.....the ewes seem to love the pennywort on the walls!

Although we keep a few sheep, we do not profess to be shepherds or farmers and we aren't great at herding. We try hard, but I am sure most sheep farmers would find us embarrassing! So in an effort to perform a little better, we have decided to increase our menagerie with a 'man's best friend', one who is supposed to have a 'natural' instinct for herding sheep.
So, meet "Devonairs Quad" our newly acquired Australian kelpie.
Poor chap is on information overload at the moment, never been in a car before, not sure if he has ever had a bath before, never met horses, or geese, or chickens before. 
But he seems to be coping with it all, although very sensibly more than a little bit wary of the geese, who are particularly grumpy at the moment because they are laying lovely, large eggs.
And fortunately our labrador Rowan seems also to be coping with having a six month old puppy on the property. Let's hope they become best of friends.
  And let's also hope that spring is only just around the corner.

Saturday, 24 March 2018

S.N.O.W at campsite

Well what a winter wonderland surprise!

I cannot remember when we last had snow like this, it has to be at least ten years ago.
Many thanks to the schools for closing early and throwing the children out, because, oh boy did we have FUN!
Dom created a tractor-doughnut collage in the campsite 
...snow angels with the dog
and he tried snowboarding on a sledge with the lawnmower tractor dragging him.
The sheep all had extra rations when the snow set in

..the poor treeferns looked bemused, but brilliantly jolly in their orange and yellow and green netting for protection and I hope they will prove resilient  .. 
..the snow was so fine and dry after a cold snap that it lay everywhere, blanketing picnic tables,
it even sneaked into the compost loo....
Although the snow looks wonderful and provides a lot of fun, it does create all sorts of problems in a county that is not conditioned to it. For us, the cold reality soon set in.
Frozen water pipes, despite inventive lagging, no water and no grass, frustrating the four legged animals and confusing the chickens and geese ....
...fortunately a hay bale arrived just as the snow started,
so fodder for our animals was sorted by another means.

Water was a little more problematic, but all minor annoyances compared to other people's problems. I know farmers who had to throw gallons and gallons of milk away because the collection tankers could not collect, folk had bust water pipes and those living in caravans and poorly insulated homes were very, very cold. Cars were abandoned, public services and hospitals stretched and women were worried about delivering their babies unattended by appropriate medical practitioners and/or in the snow! The reality of the problems that come with snow and ice are endless.
But I am a firm believer that there must always be silver linings, you just have to look hard for them.
Lucky for me, my silver linings were close to hand and I had the opportunity to snap some gorgeous photos of the snow covered beaches in St Ives. So for any camper who had hardships, I hope these pictures bring a silver lining to any of your ordeals.