December 2022

Normally I only manage one newsletter in a year but I am so excited about recent developments here that I want to tell you!

Birds … until five minutes ago my big bird news was Big Bird, but a beautiful kestrel has just perched on the railings right in front of my office window and we spent a couple of glorious minutes just staring at each other – wow! I’ve seen him around quite a bit lately, but never this close.

We are very lucky to have the company of our toddler great grand-daughter for a couple of hours most days, and she loves to go with Larry for a trip to the woods in the buggy. A magnificent buzzard has claimed his territory in the wood, and he is often there when Larry and Winnie visit. He drops from tree to tree – showing off to Winnie I like to think – impressing with his enormous 4 foot wingspan. He’s a real live Big Bird! We had rather too many pigeons in the wood this Summer, but going by the piles of feathers we are regularly seeing on the ground now, I think Big Bird is sorting the problem! Nature is working as it should, but given that pigeons breed all year round I’m sure the numbers will balance out.

Did you see the photo of the new roof top panels on our Facebook page? Darren from Vomax has recently installed solar thermal heating in the boiler house at the campsite, which he promises will be an enormous help towards heating the hot water for the showers and taps next year. We are so impressed with the set up – shiny new tank and so many dials, gauges and pipes, even without any sunshine or hot water it’s fabulous! I shall be tempted to do guided tours of the boiler house next season just to show it off! So, that means we don’t need to increase the pitch price next year as I feared, as our electricity bill should be much more sensible. Cherry Tree and Kingfisher will be just £5 per night more, and Hawthorn will remain the same. Goodness knows everything has become so much more expensive lately, we really don’t want to make life any more difficult for our guests and visitors.

In the last newsletter I mentioned that the pine trees had really suffered this year, several gave up the struggle to survive and others were obviously stressed. Many of them have had to come down and although we were dreading losing them we really rather like the new look with more space. The main wood is fine still, but there is now plenty of space for a couple of pitches where the pine trees were, and I have a feeling it will become a popular spot. It’s obviously a bit muddy at the moment but by the time we open again next year the grass will have grown and I think you’ll like it. Not quite sure where the new spot for the charcoal burner will be yet, Larry is on the lookout for another site for it.

We have plenty of plans to keep us occupied this Winter – painting the washrooms being one of them. It’s not easy to get going on that when it’s so cold, but we’ll take a heater and a radio down with us – warmth and music make it a different job don’t they? Then we have Jonno booked in for a bit of Kingfisher work – new lights and a bedroom makeover. Thankfully the pond is now back to normal, from being the lowest I have ever seen it I suspect it might soon overflow if it keeps raining like this!

So it just remains for me to send you best wishes for Christmas and the New Year. We are so looking forward to the next season, to meeting our friends again and to welcoming new visitors. We open again on Friday 28th April – we’re almost at the longest day and it’s downhill from then on (in a good way!) Do come and see us in 2023, the Winter’s rather boring here without you! 😊