Bere Marsh Farm

About the Farm

On 30 June 2020 we completed the purchase of Bere Marsh Farm, just outside Shillingstone and on the River Stour. This was nearly 5 years after we first visited, and fell in love, with the property.

It is a fantastic farm with a history of hope and conservation. It lies close to the village of Shillingstone. The River Stour runs alongside, and often over it when the floodplain does what floodplains are supposed to do flood. Just beyond is Hambledon Hill, a big chunk of chalk rising to over 600 feet — a place of incredible history, botany and geology.

There is wetland, grassland and woodland. We hope to have a small milking herd of cows, a small flock of Dorset sheep, free-range hens and orchard. It has a trailway, footpaths, a bridleway. To put it in modern parlance, it has a high footfall — a lot of people walk by it and through it.

The purchase of Bere Marsh Farm was made possible following many donations from our Friends when Gordon first died, plus ongoing donations in the five years we have been trying to make our dream a reality. In 2019 we received two very generous legacy donations which meant we finally had enough money to complete the purchase.

We'll update you further once plans are underway! It's all very exciting! 


Location

Set in the gorgeous Dorset countryside.

We have completed the works to the roof, now help us reach our BOB target! 

Update: Our beloved barn owls get a new roof despite not reaching the target!

A Victorian barn is the home to a pair of barn owls. This year, as in 15 previous years, chicks have been successfully reared. This historic Barn Owl Barn affectionately called BOB - is located amidst the meadows of Bere Marsh Farm, near the village of Shillingstone. 

It was in urgent need of repair otherwise the barn would be lost forever and the barn owls would lose their home. 

To comply with guidance from the Barn Owl Trust, this work needed to be carried out before it becomes yet more weather-beaten and the owls begin a new breeding season by mid-winter.

We are delighted to let you know that the barn owl barn roof is completed.

Our beloved barn owls get a new roof!

What is next?

We still have a need for funding! 

Although we have completed the works to the barn, we are still fundraising for BOB. It has had such a wonderful response from the public that we want to install a bird hide so that the majestic animals can be seen from a safe distance, without disturbing them. We are also hoping to install a camera into the barn so that we at the CRT, and everyone, can monitor any nests and see if/when chicks are hatched.

Why are barn owls important?

How You Can Help

Would you consider making a donation so we can build a bird hide to monitor the barn owls?

Now we have secured the long-term home for the resident barn owls, the new hide will enable us to share their story with many more people as well as monitor their future for educational purposes.

Barn owls are the pinnacle of the British countryside and we are delighted that they are residents of Bere Marsh Farm.