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Hampden Herdwicks

 

Hampden Bottom Farm is only three miles from the Ten Mile HQ, West of Great Missenden.  Excitingly we have a local farming celebrity on our hands, as Ian Waller was in 2008 named as the Farmers Weekly 'Countryside Farmer of the Year.'  Ian's main focus is arable farming, his approach to pioneering best-practice towards environmental improvement on his farm & surrounding area sets him apart in his field, a major contributing factor towards his national win in 2008.  See http://www.fwi.co.uk/articles/28/10/2008/112878/farmers-weekly-awards-winner-countryside-farmer-of-the.htm for more details of his story.

 

Ian, Fiona & some of their Herdwicks

 

Alongside his wife Fiona, he also shepherds a flock of pedigree Herdwick sheep that play an integral role in the management & ecosystem of the farm.  Native to Cumbria, it is estimated less than 5% of numbers can be found outside of the Lake District, we therefore feel very lucky to have them!  They are a slow maturing breed with wonderful strength & depth in flavour.  Much of this is down to the rearing and Ian's flock enjoy grazing on species rich chalk grassland & have a much more 'enjoyable' life than they would on the side of wet and windy fells in the North West!  The flavour is also due to the fact they are ready for eating at a much older age than commonly found, most of Ian's Herdwick meat is actually Hogget, which refers to a young sheep aged between one & two years - Ian's Herdwick is available once a year only when the animal is usually 11-13 months old, and when compared to the 3-4 month typical lifespan of much of our supermarket lamb, makes for a completely different product.  Another unusual trait of the Herdwick is that lambs are born black & turn a chocolate colour before going grey after their first shearing.

 

They are ready for purchase around Easter time & can be bought ready-frozen for your freezer by the half-lamb, professional packaging means they can be enjoyed in their prime over the following 12 months.  A real treat for a Sunday roast or dinner party & great value given that Herdwicks can offer up to 30% more meat than is often found on comparable cuts.

 

 

To view details of the Herdwick Hogget box follow this link http://www.tenmilemenu.co.uk/the-herdwick-hogget-box.html

 

Enjoy!

 

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