WTM Newsletter Issue 47 ........ September 2014
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Fresh Beef Back Wed 1st October

Our usual Angus cross, three week hung grass fed beast.
Orders in by 6pm Sunday 28th September please so I can FAX the butcher any special requirements. All the usual steaks, mince, joints and casserole meat plus plain, horseradish or onion and black pepper sausages will be available either as single items or in a value ' mini box'.
Beef Mini Box - made up to your requirements. Spend over £50 and get 10% off. A typical box will contain 2 x joints, 4 x mince, 4 x casserole lb packs, 2 x steaks and a couple of packs of sausages or burgers - the choice is yours, give me a call or email.


Shop opening hours :

Thursdays - from 11am till we have finished labelling up, generally 3pm. Free local delivery available, contact us before 10am on a Thursday for delivery later that day.
Fridays - 10 am - 5pm
Saturdays - 10 am - 5pm.

Outside of these hours please ring 07790 095 052 for service.

Any flavour - beef pork or lamb. FROZEN stock only.
All packs approx 0.25 kg ( 1/2 lb in English ). Plain sausages available in Jumbo, 'normal' or chipolata size.
We also do a Cumberland style wirl - one giant 0.25 kg sausage, looks great on a bed of mash.

Bob's veg - grown between the farm buildings.

Currently available to order or very fresh as you wait  while we harvest them -

dessert grapes 
runner beans 
conference pears 
red and green peppers

Readily available in the shop
 white and red onions 


Lancaster bombers fly past -

Word got around that the 2 Lancaster bombers on their way to Clacton air show would be flying over a house in Wigborough where an ex Spitfire pilot was staying -  a gathering of locals were treated to a fly past and it was worth hanging around for the return trip too, even if the shop was closed for half an hour .

Half a Pig

Stock the freezer with this most versatile of meats. Split it with friends or keep for yourself. You choose whether you would like joints, bacon, ham, gammon, sausages, mince or diced pork.
There is usually about 30 kg of meat at 3 / kg with sausages, bacon and ham £2.50 / kg extra.
We are happy to talk you through the options.
All fresh lamb after this week will be New Season - born march / April 2014.    20 % off when you spend over £30 on selected  frozen lamb in October / November - call into the shop to make your selection.
We will have fresh mutton at the begining of each month to coincide with Colchester Market ; St. Mary's Arts Centre first Friday of the month 9:30 am - 12:30 pm .

Hog Roast

We supply the hog roast pigs served up by local butcher John Coleman seen here at Myland Fete. There is a careful selection process on a Monday morning to ensure the right size and back fat level for the perfect roast. Why not ask us to supply the pig if you are planning an event - you could even come and choose your own !

The teachers are back at school, new season wheat and barley in the bins, straw and hay in the shed, grass seed drilled and replacement ewes purchased; we are rapidly  heading into Autumn. Part of getting older I suppose but the summer does seem to have passed rapidly.

One of the sheds at capacity with round straw bales and half Heston rectangular ones. Being able to keep the straw dry means it is not dusty for the stock or stockmen, reducing respiratory problems. Our youngest son Toby, fitted in  farm work between other apparently compulsory summer adventures after year one at Uni' and was very useful as a tractor driver hauling bales.

Inevitably there was concreting on the activities list too. We are expanding the suckler beef herd and consequently require more winter housing. There is no easy solution next to the existing cattle on the South side of the road so the plan is to convert this shed which housed the sheep last winter on the North side of the road.

We had contractors in to apply 25mm of foam insulation to the metal roof to prevent condensation. Two men and white van arrive, the chemicals are delivered, cherry picking box attached to the telescopic handler and one chap sprays whilst the other sorts out his foam supply and moves him to a new area.

Phil has had some discussion on the Farming Forum about width of Yorkshire boarding on the walls above animal height to allow ventilation but not draught. Lots of hammering later and it is in at 4 inches of wood then a one inch gap. Now on to the mammoth task of welding all the internal metal work, with the time pressure of needing to house the cattle when the weather turns.
Numbers wise the pigs are producing well, we still have work to do on them being too fat. The rations were altered to include more roughage in the form of middlings and we have some on restricted feed rather than the norm of ad lib. We started using AI from a different breeding company nearly 4 months ago and await with interest to see the first lean and muscled piglets to be born next week.
  The land which we are renting round the reservoir which hasn't been farmed for 10 years while the expansion was under way has taken a lot of work to 'get round'. The hedges have been trimmed back  revealing fences which need attention, the weeds and scrub sprayed off, mown, baled ready to burn, the land cultivated, sprayed again to kill the volunteer weeds, more cultivating to get a seed bed and finally drilled with grass - so todays rain is perfect. We hope to put the beef young stock out there next Spring.
Summer came early and hay making in June was successful. Trying to get a second cut in late July / August was not, we never went more than three consecutive days without rain. The grass still needed turning or it would kill the crop underneath, it has lost too much digestibe value and developed too many mould spores to be fit to give to stock even as bedding so it is on a trailer waiting to burn; the 'harvest' from 10 acres. Win some and lose some all due to the weather, over which we have no control.

We have several farm buildings which the swallows like to use. Due to the earliness of the seasons they have had three clutches rather than the usual two. These later chaps need to get going soon if they are to winter in Africa - we then get a respite from piles of swallow poo.

On a livestock farm you generally  do poo on a large scale and since all our housed stock are on straw as bedding this mounts up even more.

 On the right is evidence on a field scale of our muck for straw arrangement with an arable farming neighbour but on a smaller scale the muck is available in sacks ( load your own 50p or ready filled £1 ) or bring a trailer which we will load for you ( £10 per loader bucket ) - ideal for the garden or alottment.
All part of the Autumn work load is the hedge trimming; good practice and the entry level counrtyside stewardship scheme mean the inside field hedges are done every two years. This helps thicken up the hedges and is less disruptive to wildlife. We have contractors in for this job, their large, specialised equipment is just more efficient than the hedge cutter we share with a neighbour. It is another job you are best off just paying for.

Just a reminder that not only is all our meat British, it is all reared by us at Garr House Farm except the chicken which is reared in Tolleshunt D'Arcy - and yes I think gifs are fun; thanks Dudley !
 Please visit our web site              www.garrhousefarm.co.uk
Or contact us on 01206 735 694  or 07790 095 052

Kate Gladwin        Garr House Farm, Layer Road, Gt. Wigborough, Colchester Essex CO5 7RR

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Wigborough Traditional Meats · Garr House Farm · Gt.Wigborough · Colchester, Essex CO5 7RR · United Kingdom

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