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Flora & Fauna

Flora & Fauna

Last week I was struck by a comment in the article I was reading in Country Living.

“if you don’t know flora and fauna in the countryside, you won’t notice it when it’s gone”

This got me thinking about life here at Middle Coombe Farm and the rich diversity of flora and fauna in every corner of the estate and the varied habitats we are able to support. It also saddened me that they had assumed “when it’s gone”.

As an organic farm and estate our ecological philosophy that is the very backbone of everything we do. We strive daily to understand our environment so that we can not only value it but share this wonderful corner of Devon with our guests and future generations. It also got me thinking how many of the plants and animals we have on the farm I could identify – and in true form, I tested myself as I went about the rest of the day and was surprised how much I really take for granted, almost blind to it.We have been delighted to be able to provide a sanctuary for hundreds our native species – from the common to the more endangered and have records of how this has changed.

After so many years it has become second nature and we have proven that being sensitive to the environment does not mean dropping our high standards or compromising on quality. We offset as much carbon as possible through our solar panels and woodchip boilers fuelled by wood grown in the woods. We recycle everything and are plastic-less as much as possible – even our cutlery is VegWare.  All our toiletries are natural and our list of suppliers share our values – the list goes on. All this work means that one of our guests has a footprint 78% lower than the industry standard and we can continue our work as guardians of our precious countryside.

And before you ask how many species I could identify why not come and try for yourself – and thank you Country Living for opening my eyes to how lucky we are to have a rich environment on our doorstep.

Natures Surprises

Natures Surprises

I think it is fair to say that it’s been hot. Very hot. At the same time, it is this time of year when Middle Coombe Farm really comes to life as we hit peak wedding and holiday season. Every morning and evening I always make time to walk Pippa our Jack Russel, and am constantly reminded that nature never stops with something new every morning. This week it was the reminder of the heady smell of the hay waiting to be bailed in the meadow before plunging into the welcome shade of the woods with its fresh perfume – and some welcome shade as temperatures reached 30 degrees at the height of the day.

It is here that our ancient oak stands, a constant throughout the year. I can often be found sat on the swing either with a flask of hot tea in the winter or a bottle of water in the summer while Pippa takes a rest, simply drinking in the quietness and peace away from the hustle and bustle of modern life preparing myself for the day ahead. With the nearest road miles away you can hear a pin drop and simply enjoy the sound of nature, whether a bee buzzing past in the morning or the hoot of the barn owl off to hunt in the twilight.

Many of our wedding couples weave the countryside into their wedding themes and decorations with all bringing something new, just like nature – whether cutting foliage from the woodland for their bouquets and table decorations or as earlier this year making country themed domes for the tables. Likewise the people joining us for a holiday walk the crisscross of paths in the woods or play games in the meadow… or simply relax in their own private pool. For me, even after all these years it’s a real treat to be constantly surprised by and be one with nature.

20% off all Remaining Dates for July

20% off all Remaining Dates for July

We’ve got a few last minute dates for July – whether for a wedding or a holiday.

*** 20 July – 27 July was £6,160 now £5,133 – just £37 per person per night
*** 27 July – 3 Aug was £6,160 now £5,133 – just £37 per person per night

We’ve been discovered by Britain’s got Talent!

We’ve been discovered by Britain’s got Talent!

It was one of our more unusual requests – and this comes from a team that has seen over the year’s dog wedding cakes, pianos in the woods and even a bride in wings! But to us each hire of Middle Coombe Farm is unique and treasured, so this is why when ITV’s Britain’s Got Talent contacted us to host one of their semi-finalists we were thrilled and slightly star-struck.

Picked out from literally thousands of woodlands available in the country, the researcher was looking for a picturesque woodland to interview and film Olena Uutai as part of her semi-final. We know our woods are special, and so do our visitors – but this really brought it home why so many people come (and come back) to our woods.

The day of the filming couldn’t have been better. The weather was perfect, not a cloud in the sky. At this time of year spring is in full swing with birdsong, bluebells and the buzz of busy bees making the woodlands sing – allowing Olena to be at one with nature, and complement her Shamanic tones.

Living in Devon, we often take for granted our humble scone. there was a huge batch of scones for the crew – served the Devon way; lashings of clotted cream then home-made strawberry jam on the top (if you arrange a viewing with us we promise you can taste these too) and of course, copious amounts of tea. With many of the crew London based, needless to say these didn’t last long. From the comments they won’t be forgotten – for all the right reasons!

Quite simply, when Olena sang in the woods, we were moved to tears, it was like the spirits of the woods stopped to listen. It couldn’t be more perfect and despite her not getting through to the finals that day she gained us all as fans and hope she will visit us again soon. We hope you enjoyed watching the event as much as we did.

Two Moors Festival at Middle Coombe Farm

Two Moors Festival at Middle Coombe Farm

We are delighted to be hosting the  Two Moors Festival, young musiucians competition for 2018. Renowned as one of the leading classical music festivals in the UK the event draws visitors from around the world and we are so looking forward to the Cider Barn, Farmhouse and surrounding grounds being filled with beautiful music.

more details on the event can be found on the Two Moors Festival Site – http://www.thetwomoorsfestival.co.uk/discover/young-musicians

Middle Coombe Farm | A Deeply Romantic and Unique Devon Wedding Venue Celebrates its 10th Anniversary!

Middle Coombe Farm | A Deeply Romantic and Unique Devon Wedding Venue Celebrates its 10th Anniversary!

“If you’re considering a wedding in Devon, do visit Middle Coombe Farm. It’s so beautiful and the owners are so lovely you’ll have a wonderful time. The farm will always have a special place in our hearts.” Alice and Kev.

I know I shouldn’t be biased where my listed wedding suppliers are concerned but sometimes I just can’t help myself…

One that is very close to my heart for lots of reasons, not least because they have supported Green Union right from the get go (we were rooky businesses together), but also for its strong eco credentials and sheer enthusiasm for making your wedding just the very best experience, is Middle Coombe Farm.

The Middle Coombe Farm Special Weekend: Mastering the early season escapes for your family Christmas & New Year get-togethers……

The Middle Coombe Farm Special Weekend: Mastering the early season escapes for your family Christmas & New Year get-togethers……

Writing about Christmas and New Year when the joys of spring are so close at hand?…are you completely mad? I hear you yell. Not mad, just getting older, amazingly sensible & really excellent at planning. Words I never thought I’d hear myself say & certainly not in succession….

It’s about clarifying exactly what works for you as a family. Get back to what’s really important. Relax. Breathe. Smile. Make your own festive season & stuff the pressure from the Media. Time together, space together (this is as important as time together…). Turn your phone to vibrate and stick it in your sock drawer for the day. Utter rebellion. What do you want from your ‘Christmas’, or more simply put, your time together in 2017?

Half-Term Happiness at Middle Coombe Farm

Half-Term Happiness at Middle Coombe Farm

Phew. January is in full swing & the vagaries of Christmas & New Year seem months ago already. I’m not sure if that is a good or bad thing.

I spent the Christmas season hiking around visiting all those I needed to visit & like many of you, I am just poking my head above the parapet now looking for escape & a bit of rest & relaxation with my family.

Fortunately I am based at Middle Coombe Farm so all I need do is walk in the 200 acres of private woodlands each morning to set the day off in a soothing way. After travelling the world & working in many places, this is the most special place of all.

@ Middle Coombe Farm presents Made On Holiday: Staycreation on Vacation.

@ Middle Coombe Farm presents Made On Holiday: Staycreation on Vacation.

Middle Coombe Farm is excited to present Made On Holiday: Staycreation on vacation. Creative retreats just took on a whole new meaning.

From Friday 28th October this year Made On Holiday is offering 2 residential stay creation retreats at Middle Coombe Farm, Devon:
-Friday 28th October to Sunday 30th October 2016: Machine embroidery with Poppy Treffry

-Friday 4th November to Sunday 6th November 2016: Folk Tales: Trees of Life with Anne Kelly

Simplicity & Sustainability: Be Right on Trend for your Wedding Weekend. Part II

Simplicity & Sustainability: Be Right on Trend for your Wedding Weekend. Part II

‘Planning’ and ‘wedding’ are two words often followed by a little sigh & when put together can feel like a mini marathon to be completed. There are many ways to simplify & thoroughly enjoy the whole process & here at Middle Coombe Farm there is a relaxed and joyous environment, surrounded by nature, in which to realise your wedding dreams.

Simply put- we have 400 acres of heavenly space, woodlands, fresh air & our own private Devon valley. Feeling relaxed? Hold that thought…this is the key to the ultimate happy wedding planning.