Glebe Farm, Northamptonshire
Glebe Farm in its current form is relatively new, the 460 acres of land being purchased by the Chalker family in 2004, 2006 and 2008. However, historical records and archaeological studies show that a settlement has been there since Roman times. The farm lies in the low-lying Northamptonshire vales within the Nene valley, some of which borders the river. The mixed farm has recently converted to organic production.
A herd of White Park Cattle are a key feature of the farm. These are now a rare native breed and are easily recognised by their white coats, long horns and black noses. Aberdeen Angus and South Devon cross cattle are also kept.
A range of arable crops are grown on the farm, including wheat, barley, oats and beans. Grass and clover provide grazing and forage for the cattle and natural fertility for the soil. The crops are rotated around the farm in sequence. This balances the crops which add fertility (eg clover and beans) with those that use it up (eg cereal crops). Some of the crops are also under sown with clover to add fertility and to stop weeds growing.
The farm does a lot of work to help support wildlife including creating rough grassland for nesting lapwing and skylarks, beetle banks, owl boxes and pond restoration. A number of new hedges are being planted to create smaller fields, flower enhanced field margins have been created these suit both organic farming and wildlife.
The Three Hills Tumulus is a scheduled ancient monument dating from the late Neolithic to bronze-age period. Crop marks and finds also relate to a Roman settlement associated with a Roman road which crossed the land. The oldest of the current farm buildings is a brick threshing barn called 'Bonsor's Barn'. It was built by Mr JT Bonser who farmed the land in 1900. There is a wonderful panoramic view from Three Hills across the Nene Valley. On a clear day 12 church spires can be seen. Perhaps this is why Neolithic Man and the Romans settled there.
Arranging a visit
Schools and groups are welcome by arrangement. Please contact the farm.