http://www.soilassociation.org/visitanorganicfarm/visitanorganicfarm/articleid/1357/langley-chase-organic-farm-wiltshire
Langley Chase Organic Farm, Wiltshire

Visit an organic farm

Langley Chase Organic Farm, Wiltshire

Once part of a large estate, Langley Chase Organic Farm is located in the heart of the Wilshire countryside around 18 miles from Bath.

Livestock

The farm has a flock of Manx Loghtan sheep, a striking multi-horned primitive rare breed. The breed is thought to have been introduced by the Vikings in the Iron Age, and has been left unchanged by modern farming. The flock has approximately 140 ewes and 12 rams, a mix of two horn and four horn. The flocks are tupped (mated) in autumn and lambing takes place in the spring. Lambs are born jet black, and after two weeks turn lighter in colour. Sheep are sheared in May as the weather gets warmer, and the wool is sent to an organic spinner.

Permanent pasture

The farm is kept as permanent organic pasture, which, to local knowledge, has never been ploughed. The grass is rich in herbs and provides excellent pasture for the sheep to graze on for most of the year. As part of an old estate, examples of ridge and furrow can be seen in the fields. In summer grass is cut for hay or silage, and used to feed the flock in the winter. The flock is also given a small amount of organic feed during this period to supplement their diet.

Encouraging Wildlife

The farm actively encourages the wildlife it shares the land with in various ways. Traditional hedge laying practices contribute to the beauty of the landscape and provide excellent habitat for birds, insects and small animals. Hedge laying takes place outside of the bird-breeding season to prevent disruption to their breeding. Wildflowers are encouraged around the hedges by fencing to prevent grazing, and a pond has been dug in a wet area of one of the fields. This now attracts dragonflies and herons, and provides habitat for many other plants and animals. The farm is encouraging native species of trees through its ongoing tree-planing scheme, and boasts a number of ancient oaks.

Produce

The farm produces award-winning lamb, mutton and sausages with a delicious flavour. The meat is lean and low in cholesterol compared to commercial sheep, and is sought-out by leading chefs and restaurants. Meat can be mail-ordered and delivered to your door in insulated boxes with ice, or collected from the farm. The farm also sells beautiful honey-coloured sheepskin rugs from the flock.

Visiting the Farm

Visitors and schools are welcome to the farm by arrangement. The farm is well-equipped for hosting school visits, with farm tours and talks, the chance to watch sheep-dogs in action, old farm machinery to explore, pond-dipping and, at the right time of year, the chance to handle lambs and feed the ewes. With covered spaces for wet-weather activities and lunches, toilets in the farm house, and hand-washing facilities around the farm, groups are made very comfortable and welcome.  

How to get there   

From M4, Junction 17: Take the A350, signed to Chippenham. From the traffic lights on the A350 turn into Kington Langley, Plough Lane. Follow the road for 500m. Langley Chase Organic Farm is situated on the left. From the B4069: Enter Kington Langley, and drive through the village. Upon approaching a sharp double bend, Langley Chase Organic Farm is situated on the right. On arrival, please enter via the stable entrance. There are setting-down and parking facilities available. Groups meet at the stable entrance next to the green barns.  

Contact details