At only 40 acres, Mayfields Farm may be small, but it is beautiful and every aspect of it has been considered for wildlife. It was donated to the CRT in 2004 by Greta McDonough and is based in the quaint village of Themelthorpe, in the parish of Foulsham, Norfolk.
Tenant Farmer, Sarah Jenkins has a small flock of breeding pedigree Norfolk horns, southdown and Scottish blackface sheep on the small-holding, but her main activities are related to the traditional skills of shepherding, passing this heritage skill on to future generations and training sheepdogs and their handlers.
A traditional orchard of indigenous trees was planted at Mayfields Farm not long after the CRT took over. At 10 years old, the orchard is still in its adolescent stage, but will soon be reaching maturity. Sheep and lambs graze around the trees making it a beautiful spot to sit and take in the atmosphere and forget about modern life for a few moments.
A highlight of the farm is the wet woodland, which is rare. The unusual habitat attracts a wide range of different species. A raised, accessible footpath runs through the wet woodland to allow everyone to enjoy it from a safe perspective.
We are delighted that Mayfields Farm is part of the East Anglian Red Squirrel Group. We have three dedicated red squirrel breeding enclosures housing up to two pairs at a time. We hope to breed two litters from each pair every year with each litter giving us up to eight kittens to re-introduce into the wild in areas that do not have a red squirrel population, such as Anglesey in North Wales.
Sarah Jenkins, volunteers along with Chrissie Kelley from East Anglian Red Squirrel Group featured on Countryfile in 2019. During the episode, the Countryfile explored how Sarah trains sheepdogs and their handlers, breeds red squirrels in the new-build luxury squirrel house and maintains the grasslands that she new as a child.
BBC News article
A video, CRT tenant farmer Sarah Jenkins granddaughter, Barley with her pet 'white' Border Leicester sheep, Ethel, has gone viral! Read more