When ‘lockdown’ leaves you in a pickle!

We could say that all our chickens are on lockdown because of Bird flu, and with having no guests able to stay we had to come up with new ideas for using the eggs. I say new, this recipe is a trip down memory lane…… pickled eggs and a packet of crisps on a warm summers evening, there is nothing better!

I wanted to share this with you, so that you too can have a go at pickling your own eggs.

Recipe:-   1 litre of Vinegar 1 kg of Granulated sugar.   I have used just ordinary malt vinegar and sugar.   Start off by putting the container of vinegar in a saucepan with 1 kg of sugar and warming it through until the sugar has dissolved then  leave it until the next day.   I tip this back in the vinegar container and save it to be used for another time E.G. Beetroot, Onions or Red Cabbage.

  Boil the eggs for about 10 to 12 mins and leave to get cold then peel them and put into jars and cover with the sweetened vinegar   After a few days you will be able to use them with your cheese and biscuits or salad’s.

  From Brenda – just one of the many beautiful places to stay in North Devon.

It’s that cute calf time of the year!

Lynda and her family have been farming at Bampfield for 60 years. On the working farm we have 250 spring calving cows who all calve in February and March. It is always a special time, many guests have visited in previous years and seen the joys and challenges of new life on the farm.

All the Friesian /Jersey girl calves are reared to join the herd in 2 years’ time. Male Aberdeen Angus calves are sold to a neighbour.

As you can imagine there are many mouths to feed so all the family are involved.

We sell the milk to Arla a farmer owned co-operative. It is processed into cheese at the Taw Valley creamery in Devon.

Our free range cows enjoy munching the lush grass which along with the breeding, helps keep the milk rich in butterfat and protein.

Facts about cows.

  1. Did you know cows have 4 stomachs?
  2. Did you know cows are colour blind?
  3. A cow can produce 5800 litres of milk in a year, some breeds of cows can produce more than this.
  4. A cow eats 170 kilos of grass a day.

To find out more you can visit our website

We have a farm diary section, or contact

So we’re going a little ‘batty!’

Look carefully and you will see, bat boxes in the tree!

So just when we thought things couldn’t get any crazier – Georgina and her family decided to go a little more ‘batty!’

This winter, through a conservation project, the whole family made and put up bat boxes to encourage the night time visitors into their woods. The boxes have gaps of different widths to accommodate various bat species and are now located on trees, in clusters in easy bat accessible locations in Hook Wood. The boxes had to be made out of special, non treated wood and put up in places that bats would find attractive. Now it is a waiting game to see if the bats, not only come to the woods, but use the boxes that have so lovingly been created.

At Spreacombe Gardens, where Georgina and family live, there are beautiful dog friendly self catering cottages where you are welcome to see the conservation project for yourself. You could take a walk through the private woods to enjoy the variety of wildlife, or pause a while to hear the buzzing of the bees and the singing of the birds. You could relax by the tranquil pond and take a moment to recharge, a rare opportunity when life is so hectic.

So if you would like to know more, please contact Georgina using the email address below, they will be delighted to hear from you.

Lambing Time means Spring is Coming!

Forda farm is busy lambing it’s pedigree flock of Charollais sheep at the moment. They were scanned in lamb back in October and came into the lambing sheds in December. These lambs are about a week old now. Soon they will have more lambs join them as the rest of the flock continue to lamb. We aim to sell the male lambs as rams, in around,  eighteen months time to other farmers to use on their own flocks.We will of course keep a ram or two for our own flock. Not only is it lovely to see the ewes and lambs, if you listen carefully the song of the birds certainly lift the spirits. Spring is definitely just around the corner.

Val has been trying out some new scone recipes during lockdown. These have included Mincemeat scones, Maple and Walnut scones and Chocolate and Marshmallow scones. A couple of the recipes have been taken from the National Trust ‘Book of Scones’ which has 50 different recipes to try out. Who knew there could be so many different variations!

So she could be very busy and will have to watch the scales! They have all been very tasty so far.
Guests may well get the chance to try some when we are able to reopen later in the year. In the meantime keep following us on social media to so what comes out of the kitchen next!
Val Wood Forda Farm Bed and Breakfast, Forda Farm,  Thornbury, Holsworthy, N. Devon. EX22 7BS

Tel: (01409) 261 369

4 star GOLD farmhouse bed and breakfast close to the North Devon and Cornwall border.

New Year, New Lockdown!

North Devon Farm Holidays would like to wish you all a happy and healthy new year.

This post comes at the start of a 3rd lockdown and sometimes it’s hard to be positive, so I thought I would show you some beautiful photos of our countryside so that when all is up and running again you will come and see how wonderful it is for yourself.

Baggy Point, Croyd, N. Devon – with Lundy island on the horizon.
Saunton Sands and its glorious stretch of golden sand.
Valley of the Rocks at sunset. Breathtaking!
Tarka Trail – bike hire available or wonderful ‘flat’ walking, suitable for all ages.
Breakfast time on the farm – many mouths to feed all year round.
Winter time, just a beautiful as Summer.
Frosty morning across North Devon.
Always a warm welcome!
Torrington Commons -showing Taddiport and the leper fields.

This are a few of the many beautiful places to visit and stay. When all is ‘open’ and we are allowed to travel, we would love to give you a warm welcome whatever time of year it is.

Stay safe my friends!

Wishing you a very Happy Christmas!

North Devon Farms wish you a very Happy Christmas.

This has been the strangest of years, so make the most of the run up to Christmas. Why not visit RHS gardens Rosemoor near Torrington for their annual light up display. A magical experience that the whole family can enjoy. Or, buy locally from the virtual market where there are hundreds of amazing and different gifts for everyone. Now the shops are open why not visit the beautiful local shops that can be found in every North Devon Town and village.

We look forward to seeing ‘old’ friends and new ones next year. We wish you a safe and lovely Christmas, however you choose to celebrate it, and we look forward to next year with anticipation and hope, not only for our accommodation providers and lovely guests but for the whole world.

Best wishes to you all…… here’s to 2021!

Tarka Trail

Even in the pouring rain, a walk along the Tarka Trail never fails to impress me. The familiar smell of autumn, the sound of the river as it rushes along the side of the path and the colours of the fallen leaves all add to the magic of the season.

While you are strolling along the trail you could be thinking of your next adventure, for there are still many things to do when you visit North Devon.

Clovelly Apple Day, Milky Way Adventure Park and The Big Sheep are all holding family events this half term, check the websites for more details.

Whatever you do and wherever you stay, we hope you enjoy our wonderful county with all it’s natural beauty and fantastic family events.

Stay safe, stay connected and stay in touch.

Harvest Tea.

When the sun shines the harvest gets going…. and when the sun goes down it’s time for tea!

Such a traditional sight, tea in the field, pizza, sandwiches and chocolate cake…. exactly what you need at the end of a long day.

Tea brought to the workers by Glenda at Lee Barton, Umberleigh, a time for catching up, discussing the day and re- energising before it all starts again.

Harvest time.

So what a year this is turning out to be!

It all started so well, but then Coronavirus kicked off and we couldn’t open our doors to our lovely guests. At the start of lockdown the sun shone, which was a blessing in itself, and we all tried our best to keep safe.

Now, many months later it is harvest time, my favourite time of the year. The crops are ready to be gathered, the blackberries and apples are there for the taking and, although things are not quite back to ‘normal,’ the seasons still bring their beauty and their bounty and we remember that time stands still for no-one!

This year the crops have taken a lot of drying out, but finally we can bring them in ready for winter. Look out for the combine harvesters as you travel around our glorious county, harvest is a time to reap and sow, ready for next year when the whole cycle starts again.

Take care and enjoy the sights and sounds that harvest time brings.