Record Breaking Easter at Sacrewell Farm

Staff at Sacrewell Farm near Wansford are wiping the sweat from their brows as they celebrate a record-breaking Easter.

The farm, which opened its new play barn on April 5th, has had more than 13,000 people through its doors in the last fortnight, making it the busiest Easter on record.

Marketing and communications officer Megan Horner said: “We are astounded at the number of people who have come to visit us this Easter and enjoy the Big Bunny Hunt and the new play barn.

“As it is our 50th anniversary as a charity it means even more to us that people are coming and supporting us this year. The play barn is just the beginning of the exciting things we have planned for this year.”

The farm has also welcomed a litter of extremely rare breed piglets to its attractions. Ada, their British Lop sow gave birth to 12 adorable piglets last month and all are doing well.

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(Picture courtesy of Sacrewell Farm)

To top off the good news, a Soay lamb was born on Easter Sunday, bringing the farm’s lambing season to a close. The lamb has been named Skye after the region of Scotland the sheep originate from.

Miss Horner added: “It has been yet another successful year for rare breeds at Sacrewell. We have had a mix of 21 Lincoln Longwool and Jacob lambs born. Skye brings our total to 22.

“We would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our visitors who continue to support us as an educational charity and who take an interest in British farming.”

The next big event at the farm is the 1960s Spring Fair on May 4th and 5th which will celebrate 50 years of the William Scott Abbott Trust and feature May pole dancing, Morris Men, local ales, farm activities and even a bucking sheep.

For information visit http://www.sacrewell.org.uk

Otter Park – New playground at Ferry Meadows

If you’ve been to Ferry Meadows laterly you will have noticed the new playground that opened on 4th April.

Pupils from St Botolph’s CE Primary School, have been involved in the project for some months, opened the playground and were the first children to play on the amazing new play equipment.

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A meandering path travels through the playground taking children on a journey of discovery.  With water and sand play, cradle swings, an oversized slide, a hollow log, a clambering bridge, a tree den and swinging acorn pods, there is going to be plenty to explore.

Andrée Davies, of landscape architects Davies White Ltd, said “Nature is the ultimate playground and that’s exactly what we have designed here. Inspired by the local wildlife and landscape, the Otter playground is inclusive and fun for all the family, especially young children and toddlers.”

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Teresa Wood, Visitor Services Manager, said  “The Otter playground will be an exciting place for young children to come and explore.  This is the first of a three year programme aimed at improving the play areas in Ferry Meadows.  We have worked with local schools, our Nene Park volunteers and other groups to understand what our visitors want from the play provision in the Park.  Things like the acorn seats are a direct result of this work.”

Have you been to Otter Park yet?

Longthorpe Tower is brought to life with downloadable audio guides

Longthorpe Tower is often a forgotten gem amongst Peterborough’s historical venues. I received this press release regarding new audio guides to accompany you whilst you look around.

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Vivacity Heritage is proud to announce the release of audio guides to accompany your visit to Longthorpe Tower!  From this Easter, you will be able to hear the stories and secrets of the Tower, from its construction in 1300 to its conservation today.

The guide features different characters from over 600 years of history. Meet an irate quarryman who brought stone from Barnack to use around the windows and doors, and listen to Lady Margaret de Thorpe making party plans for the harvest festivities!

Discover how the Home Guard used the Tower as an observation post during World War Two, and how in the aftermath Hugh Horrell unearthed the sumptuous medieval wall paintings that had hidden under plaster for centuries.

The creation of the audio guides was managed by Abi Wilson, Heritage Development Officer at Vivacity, who was delighted to see this project through from foundation to fruition: “It has been a real privilege to work on this project, and I am so excited that everyone can now share in it. Longthorpe Tower is a fascinating building, full of surprises, and finding a way to bring its story to life has been an incredibly rewarding experience.”

This project has been achieved in partnership with English Heritage. Download the audio guide for free onto your smartphone or MP3 player by visiting www.vivacity-peterborough.com/longthorpeaudio. If you do not have an audio device, there are a small number of MP3 players available for use at Longthorpe Tower.

Longthorpe Tower reopens on 5 April, when there will be a very special event running Saturday 5 – Sunday 6 April, 10am-5pm: Preparing for War – The Tower and Richard III. It’s 1485 and Sir Robert Whittlebury is preparing to fight for King Richard III. Now’s your chance to meet soldiers, handle weapons, see the ‘arming of the knight’ daily at 11am and 3pm, find out about delicious food and gruesome cures, and take part in children’s military drill sessions! Adults £4, concessions £3 and families £10. There’s no need to book – just drop-in!

Where to visit – Peterborough Museum

Many people aren’t aware of the fact Peterborough has a museum, least of all where it is! It’s actually tucked around the back of Cowgate in one of Peterborough’s most historic buildings.

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The first recorded house on the Museum site was in the 16th century, when a grand mansion was built there for the Orme family, who were given land in the area by King Henry VIII in 1536.  The Orme family were MPs and magistrates for the city and were chiefly responsible for building the Guildhall in Cathedral Square which still stands today. Some stonework still survives from this original house in the cellars under the Museum, and there may be more elsewhere in the building.

The main part of the current building dates from 1816, when it was a grand Georgian house for Peterborough magistrate, Thomas Cooke and his new wife Charlotte. He lived in the building until his death in 1854.

In 1856, the Priestgate mansion was sold to the 3rd Earl Fitzwilliam, who allowed it to be used as the City’s first hospital, the Peterborough infirmary from 1857 until 1928. The building was altered after a fire in 1884, with wings being added on the side and an extension to the rear. The infirmary, run by a charitable trust, continued to outgrow the building, leading to the construction of a new hospital as a memorial to Peterborians killed in the First World War. Upon completion in 1928, the hospital was moved to this building, until recently part of the Peterborough District Hospital.

The Peterborough Natural History Society and Field Club was founded in 1871 to promote interest in local natural history. Within a decade, the Society had widened its interest and laid the foundation of a museum and a library. It became the Natural History, Scientific and Archaeological Society and in 1947 took its modern title of the Museum Society. 

The Museum building was acquired by Percy Malcolm Stewart, Chair of the London Brick Company, who donated it to the Museum Society. It was opened as a museum in 1931, with the art gallery added in 1939.

Many of the original Georgian features can still be seen today, as can traces of its use as a hospital – we still have the old operating theatre, which is being restored as part of the current museum redevelopment. The Museum also has a darker side to its past, and is said to be the most haunted building in the city.

There are currently over 200,000 items in the collections.  They include the Norman Cross prisoner of war craftwork, Jurassic marine reptiles, artefacts from Roman Peterborough, and the original manuscripts of the famous poet John Clare.

With Natural history, art, Social History (with items relevant to Peterborough’s history such as a Perkins engine), Norman Cross, Geology and Archaelogy collections, it really is worth a morning wandering around.

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I took my 3 year old in Half Term to the Museum Menagerie activity (which was heaving) and she loved looking round the Changing Landscapes gallery with dinosaur bones and the Ice Age section (or “the ice age film” as she called it).

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Walking round the Victorian Operating Theatre is a strange experience with it’s original tiling floors and walls. You can almost smell the antiseptic.

There is also a great little coffee shop on site.

Where to find the Museum?

Peterborough Museum, Priestgate, Peterborough, PE1 1LF

When is it open?

Open Tuesday to Sunday, 10am – 5pm (last admission 4.30pm)
Open Mondays (School holidays and Bank Holidays), 10am – 5pm (last admission 4.30pm)
Open Mondays (School terms) for pre-booked groups only.
Closed 22-24 December, Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year.

How much?

General admission is FREE.

Admission on special event days: Adults £3, Children, Students and Seniors £2, Families £6 (2 adults and up to 3 children), under 5s and Heritage Pass holders FREE.

All images courtesy of Vivacity Peterborough

Rambles create new insight into Sacrewell

For those of you who like to ramble (walking not talking) Sacrewell Farm have launched two new routes around the site. The routes are designed for people who want to get out on the Farm and explore but don’t necessarily want to pay Farm entry.

Below is more details.

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Sacrewell Farm, in association with Riverford Organic and Natural England, have launched two new ramble routes around the 550-acre site.

Starting from the Farm Centre, the two-mile and one-mile walks take you around the farmland which is leased by the William Scott Abbott Trust to Riverford Organic to grow their vegetables.

Ramblers will be able to view a number of the fields farmed on the site, as well as taking in the Riverford offices and the abundance of wildlife around the Farm.

Marketing and Communications Officer Megan Horner says the rambles will open up parts of the Farm never seen by visitors before.

She added: “We have been running tractor rides in association with Riverford for years and they are very popular with our visitors who want to know more about the farming side of things here.

“The rambles will give them an opportunity to explore on foot thanks to permissive access given by the Trust by working alongside Riverford.”

The routes have been created using a £1,000 Community Leadership Grant from Peterborough City Council. The money has been used to create posts to guide people around the Farm and will also be used to create interpretation boards so that ramblers can learn about the land they are walking on.

Miss Horner added: “The history of the Farm is fascinating and the ever changing landscape will keep people coming back season after season to see what has changed. What may be a field of cabbages one year could easily be filled with sheep the following.”

Ramble maps are free and can be picked up from Reception at Sacrewell Farm and will guide you around the two routes. Free parking is available and there is no charge to take part. Sensible footwear must be worn at all times and the Farm will not be held liable for any damage.

For more information about activities at Sacrewell please vsisit www.sacrewell.org.uk

The race is in Peterborough! Sport Relief 2014: Join in the fun and games

I received a press release this week about the upcoming Sports Relief and what’s happening in Peterborough.

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It’s time to dig out that running kit Peterborough! Sport Relief is here again. On Sunday 23rd March the Sainsbury’s Sport Relief Mile will be setting off from ferry meadows country park at 10am, with hundreds of locals getting on their marks, set and go for Sport Relief.  Super sprinters and willing walkers will all feel at home with a choice of one, three or six miles.

Enter now at http://www.sportrelief.com/, get sponsored and help transform the lives of people living here in the UK and in some of the world’s poorest countries, while being part of an incredible nationwide event.

Scott Beasley said: “This is third time the Sainsbury’s Sport Relief Mile has come to Peterborough so let’s put on the headband, get training and show the rest of the country what we can do. There will be plenty of activities on the day so don’t forget to rope in your mates, family, boyfriend, girlfriend and colleagues too!”

It’s not just the public who will be taking on the fundraising challenge. Daring Davina McCall has pledged to go the extra mile in the BT Sport Relief Challenge: Davina – Beyond Breaking Point. She will travel across the UK, all under her own steam – and all in the name of Sport Relief. By running, swimming and cycling for seven solid days, Davina will hit the streets – and waters – of the UK in a bid to raise as much cash as she can and inspire the great British public to take on their own challenges, sporty or not!

On Friday 21st March the BBC will treat the nation to a super special night of Sport Relief TV, with presenters including Gary Lineker, Gaby Logan, Claudia Winkleman, Jack Whitehall, Clare Balding amongst others, hosting a star-studded show full of celebrity performances, comedy sketches, highlights from this year’s challenges and films about the incredible work Sport Relief supports. Del Boy and Rodney will also be back on TV screens after 10 years with a special Only Fools and Horses Sport Relief sketch. Strictly host, Tess Daly, will reveal the judges’ favourite partnership from Sport Relief Does Strictly, where four Paralympians and their professional dance partners, will have taken on a group dance challenge, hoping to impress the judges and take home the Sport Relief glitter ball trophy on the night.

Then on Sunday 23rd it’s over to you Peterborough to come together and take part in the Sainsbury’s Sport Relief Games.

To enter The Peterborough sport relief mile visit www.sportrelief.com.

ABOUT THE SAINSBURY’S SPORT RELIEF GAMES

The first ever Sainsbury’s Sport Relief Games take place from Friday 21st to Sunday 23rd March 2014. The public can join the fun and games by running, swimming or cycling their way to raising cash at over a thousand venues around the country, including the landmark events at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

Entry fees for the Sainsbury’s Sport Relief Games:

Event

Adult

Children (under 16)

Family (2 adults, 2 children)

The Mile

£6

£3

£15

About Sport Relief

As one of the UK’s biggest fundraising events, Sport Relief brings the entire nation together to get active, raise cash and change lives. Since 2002, Sport Relief has raised over £195million. The money raised by the public is spent by Comic Relief to help people living incredibly tough lives, both at home in the UK and across the world.

From the BT Sport Relief challenge Walliams Vs The Thames to Eddie Izzard’s 43 marathons in 51 days Sport Relief has a unique history of brave celebrities taking on gruelling physical challenges to raise cash and change lives and Sport Relief 2014 will be no exception.

Comic Relief is a UK charity, which aims to create a just world, free from poverty. The money raised by Comic Relief, through its fundraising campaigns Red Nose Day and Sport Relief as well as other initiatives, is spent at home in the UK and across the world to help people, families and whole communities stand on their own two feet.

Comic Relief is a registered charity 326568 (England/Wales); SC039730 (Scotland)

ABOUT SAINSBURY’S AND SPORT RELIEF

  • Sainsbury’s is proud to be the official sponsor of the first Sainsbury’s Sport Relief Games 2014
  • Official merchandise will be available at Sainsbury’s and on sportrelief.com with a donation from each purchase going to help people living incredibly tough lives here in the UK, and across the world
  • Sainsbury’s raised £5.5 million for Sport Relief 2012

OFFICIAL MERCHANDISE

Available from Sainsbury’s, sainsburys.co.uk and sportrelief.com

  •  Headband – £2.50 with at least £1.25 going to Sport Relief (also available at participating Oxfam shops)
  • Adult unisex T-shirt – £10 with at least £4 going to Sport Relief
  • Children’s T-shirt – £6/7 with at least £2.40/£2.80 going to Sport Relief
  • White unisex T-shirt – £10 with at least £4 going to Sport Relief
  • Sweatband – £1.50 with at least 75p going to Sport Relief
  • Wristband – £1 with at least 50p going to Sport Relief
  • Pin Badge – £1 with at least 50p going to Sport Relief
  • Water Bottle – £1.50 with at least 75p going to Sport Relief
  • Socks – £2.50 with at least £1.25 going to Sport Relief
  • Soft Ball – £1 with at least 50p going to Sport Relief
    Deeley Boppers – £2 with at least £1 going to Sport Relief
  • Sports Bag – £3 with at least £1.50 going to Sport Relief
  • Air Freshener – £1.50 with at least 75p going to Sport Relief
  • Dog Toy – £3.25 with at least £1.30 going to Sport Relief

About BT

Speaking Clock

Davina will be the voice of BT’s Speaking Clock from Monday 27th January until the 23rd March, during which BT will donate 10p to Sport Relief for every call made to the BT Speaking Clock from a BT landline.

* If you call the BT Speaking Clock from a BT fixed line in the UK between January 27 and March 23, 2014 you will be helping BT to raise funds to support Sport Relief. BT will donate 10p to Sport Relief for every call made from a BT fixed line in the UK to the BT Speaking Clock during this period. Calls cost 31p from BT Residential lines.  Mobile and other providers’ costs may vary and not all providers use the BT Speaking Clock. In support of Comic Relief, registered charity 326568 (England/Wales); SC039730 (Scotland).

Dial For Davina

BT are also declaring Thursday 13th February ‘Dial for Davina’ day, where BT will kindly donate 1p to Sport Relief for every call made from a BT home phone line, BT business line as well as every call made from a BT payphone.

*BT will donate 1p for every phone call made by a BT residential and business calls and lines customer from a BT residential or business landline, every call made from a BT payphone and 25p for every call to BT’s Directory Enquiry Service 118500 from any landline or mobile between 00.01 and 24.00 on the 13/02/14. **Calls to 118500 cost 59p per call plus £2.39 per minute, or part thereof, from BT landlines (excluding BT payphones). Mobiles and other networks may vary. In support of Comic Relief, registered charity 326568 (England/Wales); SC039730 (Scotland).

March Events at Sacrewell Farm

Sacrewell Farm is always a popular place to visit in Peterborough.

To celebrate their 50th year they have lots of events scheduled, I received a press release for March which also includes the lambing season, which is always worth a visit.

I am also pleased to add the Mumsnet Peterborough site will be running a competition to win a Family ticket for the Lambing Event! Check out the site for details. http://local.mumsnet.com/peterborough

(All pictures courtesy of Sacrewell Farm)

Spring is stirring at Sacrewell

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What is the first sign of spring? Pancakes of course!

At Sacrewell Farm near Wansford we will be putting on a host of great pancake themed fun and games on March 2nd from 9.30am – 5pm to celebrate Pancake Day. Come and have a go at our Pancake Trail or challenge your friends to a relay in our brilliant pancake race! Will you be able to tackle the obstacles put in place while wearing some wacky outfits?

March is also set to be one filled with new arrivals. We are expecting some very exciting baby animals, including additions our rare breed sheep flocks, some fluffy chicks and a litter of British Lop piglets.

If you visit the Farm after March 8th there may be a chance for you to feed one of our orphaned cade lambs which are rescued by staff at the Farm each year and hand raised. The lambs will be given names popular in 1964 this year to celebrate the William Scott Abbott Trust’s 50th anniversary.

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Marketing and Communications Officer Megan Horner said: “We cannot wait for lambing to start in March. For us it symbolises the end of a very wet winter and we are hoping the sun will come out for us!

“Lambing is by far our most popular event of the year-especially with schools. We are really looking forward to welcoming everyone to Sacrewell to tell them all about the exciting plans we have in store this year.”

Lambing will run at Sacrewell from March 8th – April 27th so there is plenty of time to visit the new arrivals. The piglets are due later in March and our Hatchery will be booming with chicks.

On Mother’s Day (March 30th) Mums and Grandmothers can get into the Farm for free! So there’s no excuse not to visit some of our resident mothers with their new arrivals.

Visitors to the Farm will also be able to see the plans for the new play barn which is due to open at Easter. It will be filled with brand new farm themed play equipment for children aged from babies to teenagers!

The Farm is open daily from 9.30am – 5pm. For more information about events please visit www.sacrewell.org.uk or call 01780 782254