Alison Howell from Bath City Farm starts the first of her monthly columns from this popular venue where families can enjoy a host of attractions and events
This time a couple of weeks ago, we had great excitement on the farm as our latest two new arrivals, two 10 week old Mangalitsa piglets, arrived. This rare breed of pig is affectionately known as ‘sheep pigs’ because of their thick curly coats of hair which appears as the piglets grow. The new arrivals came from a specialist breeder, and our team of volunteers had worked hard to make sure the home for the piglets was clean and warm with new bedding ready for them.
Our two female piglets are looking for names and if you visit the farm you can take part in our competition to name them. To enter the naming competition, we simply ask that you make a donation to the work of the farm, either by popping one in our blue lion next to the farm office or by texting GOAT followed by your donation amount to 70085 eg GOAT5, and then visit the farm office with your chosen names. We will be having a naming ceremony on 20 September with Bladud the pig, mascot of Bath City Football club, helping us to announce the winner.
Caring for the piglets is just one of the tasks carried out by our amazing volunteers. There are a multitude of different tasks to be carried out including mucking out the piglets and giving them fresh straw, feeding them and giving them health checks to ensure they are healthy. We also have to ensure that their mud wallows are kept full, especially at this time of year when it can be hot and sunny. Pigs can get sunburned skin and the mud helps to protect their skin!
Pigs are very intelligent animals and we have just resown their pen with a seed mix of grasses and plants that they like to forage for and eat. The piglets also have an enrichment toy which is a big barrel with holes in containing food, and it makes eating a fun and playful experience. If you get the chance, do come along and see our piglets whilst they are still small!
Alongside our lovely new piglets there’s lots to come and see here at Bath City Farm during the summer holidays. We are open Tuesdays to Saturdays 10am to 4pm. In-case you’ve yet to pay a visit, we’re a 37 acre site (a football pitch is about two acres) and we are located in Twerton on slopes overlooking Bath. In fact, the views from the farm are terrific, you can see for miles from our site.
We have myriad farm animals which you can visit, including three rare breed Dexter cattle called Daisy, Buttercup and Eclipse, goats, pigs, two ponies called Dougie and Douglas, hens including Lady Gaga and Wing Co (short for Wing Commander), and ducks and rabbits. We also have nature trails, a woodland walk and beech tree avenue, a woodland playground and outdoor playground area. Our cafe kiosk serves home-made cakes, sausage rolls with our own reared pork and apples grown in our orchard, teas, coffees and cold drinks, smoothies and milkshakes.
Join me next time for Tales from Bath City Farm.