Here’s the place for anything and everything no matter how random – you’ll find us living the good life and getting up to all kinds of things. Don’t be afraid to post and let us know what you’re thinking.

Keeping Chickens


Back by popular demand, here are our hints and tips for keeping chickens….

Please do share your own advice and chicken-keeping stories; we’d love to hear from you.

Chickens – a productive pet
Simple to keep, with a little care and attention, chickens will reward you with delicious fresh eggs, rich manure for your veg patch and a surprisingly friendly feathered friend.

Here’s five essential steps to get you started

1. Identify your available space – 0.5m2 per chicken is needed in your henhouse plus about 1m2 per chicken if you want to pen them in for safety during the day – the bigger the run the better if you can’t let them free-range safely.
Build your coop
2. Build your coop – adding bedding and water. Ensure that your coop is dry, draft-free and safe from predators

3. Choose your chickens- transport them home safely – your chickens will be more than comfy in a secure cardboard box with a little straw or shaving in the bottom for the short distances, it will help to have some extra air holes in the sides of the box to help ventilation.

4. Move them in, feed them, nurture them, stroke them, love them.

5. Collect your eggs and enjoy!

n.b. Some local areas have rules on keeping chickens so always check any restrictions before buying your coop – even if you are allowed it’s also best to ask your close neighbours if they mind – especially if you’re considering getting a rooster.

Get your coop from:
www.forshamcottagearks.com
www.omlet.co.uk
www.pandtpoultry.co.uk

Get your hens from:
Ask other hen keepers locally to see where they got theirs – Joules shops around the country have community notice boards where you can pin up a notice asking for information or if you have good information yourself, please go and pin it up for others to see.

www.cotswoldchickens.com – a really great site full of useful info about how to care for your hens. They do sell them but you’d have to collect.

www.bhwt.org.uk – The Battery Hen Welfare Trust tells you how you can adopt some ex-battery hens.

www.allotment.org.uk – this site has some very informative Poultry Pages and groups that chat via the site so you can ask questions wherever you’re located to get good local answers.

www.perfectpoultry.co.uk – offer nationwide delivery and sell all kinds of Chicken Breeds, Chicken Hatching Eggs, Chicken Huts and Poultry Incubators.

The adventures of a new sewing machine

WEEK 2

With my first project proudly behind me I decided to embark on something more challenging and signed up to a 10 week Dress Making course at my local college. I approached the first week with nervous anticipation and a shiny new tape measure and sewing kit. We spent our first Wednesday evening learning about how to take the numerous measurements that may be needed and deciding whether we felt brave enough to start from scratch and create our pattern.

I went for the less challenging option and spent a Saturday afternoon flicking through the pattern books trying to pick a favourite. After spending far too long in a state of indecision I picked a Cynthia Rowley pattern by Simplicity (http://www.habithat.co.uk/product_info.php/products_id/10648), which at the time looked quite straight forward. I also picked up some fabric, I went for a pink, summery fabric with a leaf pattern (apparently a highly patterned fabric will help hid any mistakes).

With just about everything I needed, I was ready to start and looking forward to week two.