Blaze Farm –
Perfect for Days out with the Kids
What to do with the kids? An oft-asked question by parents across the country. The choices shouldn’t really include, “send them up the chimney”, or “stick ’em in the cupboard under the stairs”. That’s not what we’re advocating (not today anyway).
No, assuming you can drag them away from their IPads etc, we’re suggesting you take them somewhere they’ll enjoy, that’s actually outdoors.
What better place then, than Blaze Farm– a splendid place nestling in a village called Wildboarclough. Now, I’m sure the locals pronounce it Wilbercluff or something equally sensible, but we quite like the literal pronunciation of a place where wild boars used to roam in a narrow gorge. Or maybe they still do?
This then was exactly what we did, when our kids visited recently. We say kids of course, but I’m reminded by my Mother in Law that they’re actually children, and not young goats. Biologically this may be true, but I’m sure young goats are well known for their love of climbing on anything and eating stuff they really shouldn’t.
Still, our kids are now bringing their own kids to visit us now, so the kids aren’t actually kids, they’re adults, but their kid’s kids are still definitely kids.
We’ll spare you the obvious George Orwell references, as visiting Blaze Farm really does give you the opportunity to get up close and personal with a few of their animals, without feeling as if they’re likely to maim you in some horrific way, urged on by a psychotic boar.
As a consequence, the youngsters had more than enough time to be somewhat perplexed by the behaviour of the resident chicken, who seemed to be showing off his unique ability to cluck rather a lot, without us having to rush them off to the next ‘exhibit’.
This was nothing compared to their amazement at the length of the tongue extended by one of the young cows, or the noise emanating from the two resident pigs who, for the sake of argument, we’re going to call Napoleon and Squealer. I’m not sure if Squealer was the squealer, or Napoleon, but one of them was making one hell of a din, even drowning out the squeals of the many visiting kids (or young people, as they’re now referred to on the TV News).
When we’ve been to Blaze Farm before, we’ve had the pleasure of meeting a few of their cats, who seem to positively love the attention they get, as they lie prostrate in some sunny spot.
Once you’ve enjoyed your trip around the other animals, perhaps feeding young lambs, or seeing the sheep being sheared, during the appropriate season of course, you can treat yourself to a wander around the nature trail.
As the farm is located on the side of the valley, you’re able to enjoy some wonderful views across the fields. Once you’ve navigated the geese that is. These noisy little buggers didn’t scare the kids as we’d feared but did hold their attention for quite some time. All of which just egged the geese on to honk and shriek even louder!
The highlight of the trip, at least for the youngsters this is, is what Blaze Farm is rightly famous for. Their ice cream is made from milk donated by their own cows. Nothing too unusual about that, but these cows provide milk containing special A2 proteins, which can alleviate many of the issues some people suffer from after consuming ‘normal’ milk. Luckily this isn’t an intolerance that impacts us, but what we can say is that the ice cream is yummy and does a wonderful job of smearing little faces!
As an extra treat for the grown-ups removing the kids from their IPads, there’s a fabulous pub called The Rose and Crown just down the road, into which they can retreat for a well-earned drink and some fabulous food.
This is the sort of pub that all Americans imagine when they think of a traditional English boozer, as they like to call it whilst trying to sound like Dick Van Dyke in Mary Poppins. It’s full of nick-knacks, paintings, old furniture, excellent beer and those brass things that old cart horses used to have adorning their tackle (no sniggering at the back please).
So, Blaze Farm – it’s great. Take the kids, they’ll love it! What’s more it’s just a 30-minute drive from The Laurels across some of the most fabulous countryside you’ll see. You can even download our route map so you won’t get lost.
In the meantime, remember;
“The distinguishing mark of man is the hand, the instrument with which he does all his mischief.”
― George Orwell,