Eight London Red Ropers joined some other guests at Lower Shaw Farm in Swindon for the New Year. Lower Shaw is a community farm which has chickens, ducks, (currently shut in due to the threat of bird flu) 2 pigs, 3 sheep and an organic garden. The old farmhouse and 3 acres of land remain, surrounded by Swindon suburbia. They run short courses for adults in yoga, crafts etc; working weekends and activities for local children.
On the first day we all headed for Avebury. The fog cleared as we arrived, to leave a bright sunny day. 3 Walks of different lengths were enjoyed, some walking round the stone circle, which was busy with families, others to Silbury Hill and beyond.
Next day was a bit rainy, but groups set off to Barbury Castle and walked, some heading later to visit the town of Marlborough. Two of us opted to catch the bus into Swindon and visit the excellent Steam Museum. Games, singing and puzzles occupied the evening before seeing in the New Year with Prosecco and fireworks provided by surrounding Swindon (on a now cold and clear night).
A late start on New Year’s Day saw more rain, but a group set off to walk to Purton Church, while a couple of others drove to Uffington to visit the castle and white horse, where they reported blizzard conditions, but were undeterred! It had proved an enjoyable stay.