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FAQ

FARM

How big is the farm?

We own 45 acres and rent a further 400 acres from The National Trust, Haybridge Nature Reserve, as well as from other private landowners Conservation Grazing for Friends of the Lake District, and the National Trust.

Do you grow crops?

No because the land is not suitable. In the past we have grown potatoes and other root crops but it is not economically viable. We now just grow a small amount for ourselves at the farm.

What kind of farm is it?

It is a traditional upland livestock farm. We have mainly sheep and cattle but also a couple of breeding pigs. We have some pedigree livestock such as Luing cattle, Whitebred Shorthorn Cattle, Castlemilk Moorit and Teeswater Sheep and British Lop pigs. The other breeds we keep are Blue Grey cattle, Blue Faced Leicester sheep.

What is Conservation grazing?

It’s where you use livestock as a management tool to improve or maintain the ecology of the area, usually for specific species. Most often birds and butterflies and the associated plant species.

How long have you had the farm?

I am the 6th generation at Nibthwaite Grange Farm, though my ancestors have farmed within 3 miles of the farm for at least 600 years.

What subsidies do you get?

We get an annual payment which is EEC funded which is available to all farmers who farm more than 5 hectares and produce agricultural goods. This is partly to maintain food security but also to maintain the landscape. We are also in our 3rd environmental scheme, which is currently called High Level Stewardship where we are paid to maintain certain environmental and landscape features and improve others. We have minimum and maximum grazing on each field that vary throughout the year to make sure land is not over or under grazed to maintain a good biodiversity.

Are you organic?

No. It is almost impossible to gain organic status on an upland farm; however, the farming practices we use are organic in principle.

Do you take volunteers or students?

Yes we occasionally take volunteers. Please get in touch and let us know your particular interests.

CAMPSITE

What does SSSI mean?

Special Site of Scientific Interest. A government body has designated the area as a SSSI and means that regular monitoring is undertaken.

Why does the National Trust own it?

It was donated to the National Trust by the previous owner and is therefore protected from future sale or major changes on the land. The SSSI status further protects the land from development. It also has nationally important archeology dating back to the Bronze Age.

Why can’t we collect our own firewood?

Because one of the main reasons Dodgson Wood is a SSSI site is because it is an important habitat for bryophytes (the oldest land plants on earth. They have been around for 400 million years) which live off living and rotting wood. Moving any wood from the site disturbs these habitats. Moving wood can result in fines from Natural England of up to £5,000.

Why do we need to ask permission to bring dogs?

We often have to move livestock past the campsite so we always need to know when dogs are on the campsite. There is also a lot of wildlife living in the woods.

Why do we have to bring bottled water?

The water onsite is straight from the steam and so is untreated. We have lots of water containers at our farm so to save on plastic, you are more than welcome to come to the farm and borrow our water containers and fill them up at the farmhouse.

Why do you only allow six cars onsite?

This is part of our lease agreement so as to limit disturbance to the site.

Why do you have compost toilets?

As it is a SSSI and because we want to run the site as eco-friendly as possible, we use compost toilets.

CAMPING BARN

What does SSSI mean?

Special Site of Scientific Interest. A government body has designated the area as a SSSI and means that regular monitoring is undertaken.

Why can’t we collect our own firewood?

Because one of the main reasons Dodgson Wood is a SSSI site is because it is an important habitat for bryophytes (the oldest land plants on earth. They have been around for 400 million years) which live off living and rotting wood. Moving any wood from the site disturbs these habitats. Moving wood can result in fines from Natural England of up to £5,000.

How old is Wrostler’s Barn?

The barn was built in the 1800’s to house cattle, hay and the farm horse.

Why does the National Trust own it?

It was donated. It is also protected because of the Wrostler’s roof which is very rare now. Wrostler is a Cumbrian word for ‘wrestler’ and this refers to the way the slates link together at the top.

Is there anywhere we can store bikes/canoes etc?

Yes under the barn there is space to store bikes etc. We can give you the padlock code if you need to use it.

Why do we need to ask permission to bring dogs?

If we have animals grazing close by so we like to know in advance.

Why do we have to bring bottled water?

The water comes straight from the stream so is untreated. We have lots of water containers at our farm so to save on plastic, you are more than welcome to come to the farm and borrow our water containers and fill them up at the farmhouse.

Why do you only allow 4 vehicles when it’s a public car park?

This is part of our lease agreement so as to not completely fill the public car park.

PARKAMOOR

How old is the cottage?

The original bit (ground floor) was built by the monks of Furness Abby in around 1300.

When was it last properly lived in?

It was lived in until the 1950’s.

Why does the National Trust own it?

It was donated to the National Trust in the mid 1950’s.

Why can’t we have a campfire?

It is part of the lease agreement. The risk if a grass fire is quite high and there is no way emergency services could get to the site. It’s a risk not worth taking.

Why do we need to ask permission to bring dogs?

Because we usually have sheep grazing right next to the cottage, we always like to know.

Why does water run through the main room after a heavy rain?

There is a natural spring running under the cottage. As it’s built on rock, to divert the spring would spoil the integrity of the building which is Grade 1 listed. The water disappears quickly as the house was designed to cope with this!