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Food and Produce Archive


Mabel Pearman’s Burford Browns – what another hen!

Features, Food and Produce by Tony No Comments »

Burford Browns in the grass Image (c) Clarence Court
A real Cotswold Hen with very special ox-blood dark brown eggs

This is another special Cotswold Hen. The name originates from Cotswold farmers Tom and Mabel Pearman who moved to Westhill, Burford during the early 1900′s. Mabel earned pin money from butter and from the special dark brown eggs from the hens which were her pride and joy.

Mabel kept her hens in the Rickyard at Manor Farm and they were free to roam on the grassy slopes overlooking Burford High Street.

Their eggs were very special with a chocolate coloured shell and large deep yellow yolks and a super flavour. With their thick dark brown shells they soon became known as Burford Browns.

Mabel Pearman was Philip Lee-Woolf’s grandmother and the origins of her birds have been passed down through the family until he has reintroduced the breed through the ethical egg producer he founded – Clarence Court. Three years ago Mr Lee-Woolf, bred the first Mabel Pearman’s Brown Burford in 50 years. The hens were difficult to breed because the gene for a chocolate-coloured egg is recessive, meaning it would be swamped by any genes for other colours. Only chickens with a particular heritage produce the eggs.

Another problem is that the blue-black hens lay just five eggs a week compared with up to 10 from the average modern hybrid.

Clarence Court are donating 2p to HEN Aid for every pack of Burford Brown eggs sold between now and End of September.

www.clarencecourt.co.uk

Farm Africa – making a lasting difference to Africa’s families.

Old Cotswold Legbar? What the heck is that?

Features, Food and Produce by Tony 1 Comment »

Old Cotswold Legbar, Picture (c) Clarence CourtFrom Patagonia to Stow-on-the-Wold – what a journey!

An “Old Cotswold Legbar” is a chicken. The hen lays her eggs in a variety of beautiful pastel colours including turquoise, blue, olive, pink, peach and eau-de-nil. The colours are perfectly natural and are akin to the eggs laid by many wild birds.

They are proud, striking birds with distinctive “crests” and the hawk-like eyes of their earlier Chilean relatives. They can be traced back to the 1920s. Botanist and explorer, Mr. Clarence Elliott from Stow-on-the Wold in the Cotswolds, who toured the world collecting rare plants and animals, set sail for home in 1927 from Patagonia and amongst the many animals on board his “Noahs Ark” were three Chilean Araucana hens and a cockerel. Disaster struck when the cockerel was killed accidently but the three hens survived the trip.

These hens were used at Cambridge University in genetic studies of poultry and by crossing these Araucana hens with White Leghorns and Gold Legbars, and over four generations, they produced the Cream Legbar.

Direct descendants of these Cambridge Legbars are now kept on farms in the Cotswolds and have been instrumental in the development of Clarence Court’s own bird – the Old Cotswold Legbar.

Clarence Court are donating 2p to HEN-Aid for every pack of Old Cotswold Legbar eggs sold until the end of September.

www.clarencecourt.co.uk

Stay for Bed and Breakfast at Little Gidding and you will be served a free range Old Cotswold Legbar egg (or eggs) from Ebrington Washbrook at the breakfast table and we can show you the blue egg shell as proof.(subject to their hens co-operating and providing enough eggs)

The amazing Maize Maze is ready again

Events, Features, Food and Produce, Places by Tony No Comments »

Maize Maze (c) John RightonJuly 21st – Hidcote Manor Farm Maize Maze opens – until September 9th

This year’s theme is “magical” and the maze is in the shape of a giant Cotswold wizard over 200 metres tall.

This maze was designed by the world’s leading maze designer Adrian Fisher who has been designing and creating puzzle mazes for 21 years. Adrian’s designs have been created in over 30 countries and have won 6 Guinness world records.

The Hidcote maze is cut into a field of fodder maize and interspersed with over 50,000 sunflowers. Bridges and Observation Towers offer a magic sight and scenic views across the Vale of Evesham and to the Malvern Hills.

The giant wizard is over eight acres in size with more than four miles of paths and the whole maze is then chopped down in mid-september and made into silage for the farm’s cattle.
Aerial view of the Hidcote Maize Maze. Photo (c) John Righton
The Maze is open daily from 10.00 am to 6.00 pm.

Entrance: Adults £4.75, Children £3.75, Family £15.00 (2 adults + 2 children)

www.hidcotemaze.co.uk

Hidcote Manor Farm, Hidcote Bartrim, Chipping Campden, Gloucestershire GL55 6LP
A great way to get lost in the countryside.

An Eggcellent idea – Live Aid has hatched Hen Aid

Features, Food and Produce by Tony 1 Comment »

Clarence CourtBuy Clarence Court Eggs and Help Raise Money for Farmers in Africa

Clarence Court has championed ethical egg production since it was founded seventeen years ago by Cotswold farmer Philip Lee-Woolf and he has pioneered the revival of pure breed bloodlines which, unlike modern hybrids, are bred for egg quality and not quantity.
Farm Africa
Last year he distributed radios to all his producer farms because music relaxes chickens and happy hens lay better eggs.

Philip was anxious to do more and to mark the 22nd anniversary of Live Aid, the multi-venue rock concert for famine relief, Clarence Court has joined forces with FARM-Africa to raise money for its chicken projects in pastoral communities in Eastern and South Africa.

500,000 charity packs of Old Cotswold Legbar and Burford Browns eggs will go on sale from 13th July until the end of September and for every pack sold Clarence Court will donate 2 pence per pack, with the aim of raising more than £10,000.

This donation will help change the lives of marginal chicken farmers by educating them about how to manage their natural resources more effectively and build sustainable livelihoods on their land.
Clarence Court Eggs
The Clarence Court charity egg boxes will be stocked in Waitrose, Sainsbury’s, Booth’s, Fortnum & Mason, Harrods and selected Asda stores.

FARM-Africa is an international non-government organisation that aims to reduce poverty in Eastern and South Africa and has projects in Ethiopia, Kenya, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda and Southern Sudan.

www.clarencecourt.co.uk
www.farmafrica.org.uk

charlotte.Hutley@thespaway.com

So come on, eat an extra egg for breakfast and help Hen-Aid to achieve it’s target.

Ebrington wins Bronze Medal

Features, Food and Produce by Tony 2 Comments »

Ebrington Gardening Club EntryEbrington and District Gardening Club wins a Bronze Medal at Hampton Court

It is the first time that the Club has entered the famous “The Hampton Court Palace Flower Show” in London and they came away with a bronze medal, which was a great achievement.

They entered the “Window Box & Hanging Basket Competition, Class WB2″ The Theme was “Edible” and the title of their entry was “Feathered Food Fantasy.”

The entry contained strawberries,nasturtiums and tomatoes with members of the club providing suggestions for the contents.

Barry and Sally Sabin prepared several entries and then chose the best one on the day. Their choice was proved right!.

Well done to all involved.

Championship Cheese in Broadway

Features, Food and Produce by Tony No Comments »

Gorsehill Abbey St Oswald Cheese is a Supreme Champion

Michael and Diane Stacey of Gorsehill Abbey Farm near Broadway took the Supreme Champion at the Three Counties Cheese and Dairy Produce Competition with their St Oswald cheese. St Oswald is a small rind washed cheese which becomes richer, stronger and more aromatic as it ages. It is named after Oswald, Bishop of Worcester and later Archbishop of York, who is buried at Worcester and is one of their patron saints.

The Three Counties Show was held at Malvern Worcestershire in Mid June and the brand new Cheese & Dairy Produce Show was open to producers resident in Herefordshire,Worcestershire and Gloucestershire. Warners Budgens sponsered this new show and as Supreme Champion the St Oswald cheese will be on sale in their Broadway, Bidford upon Avon and Moreton in Marsh stores for at least two months.

Gorsehill Abbey Cheese produce a range of Fresh and Ripened Cheeses which are available from the farm most of the time or at a number of local shops and Farmers Markets.

www.gorsehillabbey.co.uk

Gorsehill Abbey Farm has been registered organic for over ten years although it has been managed to organic standards for much longer. Michael and Diane have been farming here for over thirty years but have only made cheese commercially since 2003.

10th Charlbury Beer Festival

Events, Food and Produce by Adam No Comments »

The 14th of July will see the start of this year’s beer festival at Charlbury. Featuring over 300 gallons of real ale and nearly 30 gallons of Cider from a variety of breweries across the UK, 2007 looks to be an enjoyable event for all.

Charlbury has been running a beer festival every year since 1998. Past festivals have seen beers with unusual names such as “Whammerler’s Wheat”, “Otter Bitter”, “Celestial Steam” and “Buff”. The festival also offers a selection of Red and White Wines, Pimms, Soft Drinks and Hot Food.

The beer festival raises funds for local groups including the local Primary School which it has raised £36,000 for over the past eight years.

The festival starts at 12 noon and finishes at about 11pm. There are likely to be a few headaches the following morning.

Charlbury is located near the town of Chipping Norton, Oxfordshire

National Plant Collection of Juglans

Events, Food and Produce, Places by Tony No Comments »

12th June Ebrington Gardening club visits Upton Wold

As part of it’s extensive 2007/2008 programme Ebrington and District Gardening Club is visiting Upton Wold, near Moreton in Marsh, on Tuesday 12th June for a private evening visit.

The gardens are set around a c17th century manor house hidden in a wold and contain part of the National Collection of Juglans (Juglans are Walnut Trees).

The garden is ever developing and ever changing and has wonderful views. It has a tunnel of yew trees bordering the central lawn , lovely herbaceous borders , an ornamental fruit garden, vegetable garden and greenhouses.

The garden is open for the NGS scheme(the house is not open) during 2007.

How about joining the Club? Annual membership is only £5.00 and there is a very wide and varied programme arranged. Contact Dorothy Hart on 01386 840869

Medieval,Morris and Cider Festival

Events, Food and Produce by Tony No Comments »

2nd June – 3rd June The Almonry Museum Evesham

Featuring Medieval Medicine and Surgery, Merrie England Re-Enactment Group, Ministrel Music and Court Dancing,

On Saturday evening the “Exile Buskers” an Irish/English Folk music band will be playing in the Market Place with a pig Roast.

Strong Cheddar Cheese, Crusty Bread and Shallots will be served in the Cider Bar on both days and there will also be free entry to the Almonry Museum on both afternoons

Asparagus Festival, Fleece Inn, Bretforton

Events, Food and Produce by Tony 2 Comments »

May 27-June 3 2007 Asparagus Festival, Fleece Inn, Bretforton,

Events include an asparagus auction, farmer’s market, morris dancing, Children’s asparagus trail, fairy grotto,craft fair,silver band and displays of asparagus artifacts. Samuel Pepys loved it and Shakespeare has a passing affection for it (so they say). Come and stay at Little Gidding and give it a go.

The Fleece Inn is a historic National Trust property and is worth going to see for it’s original interior alone including one of the finest sets of pewter plates in the UK.

The Fleece is situated in the heart of Worcestershire’s Vale of Evesham- the traditional home of English asparagus.

The Festival is a must for the asparagus lover providing theopportunity to taste,buy and learn about one of the country’s most sought after delicacies.

On Monday 28th May Rachel Green, TV’s Flying Chef will provide a cookery demonstration.

www.british-asparagus.co.uk

www.thefleeceinn.co.uk

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