DECEMBER 2015

The wet and windy weather, that we have enjoyed for the last month, seems set to continue for a while into December.  We may not have had record levels of precipitation in November, but the end result has been soggy fields and ditches and drains running well.  Small flocks of redwings and fieldfares are enjoying the yew and hawthorn berries in the hedges but nowhere near the numbers we used to see 20 years ago in the orchards down East End Lane.

We took advantage of a fortnight spell of fine weather to drill some milling wheat at Crowfield Hall recently.  Sowing wheat immediately after lifting sugar been is practiced by many growers who have land which can be ploughed and drilled with a power harrow combination drill and is a technique which can work well if the weather behaves itself.  It is essential to have the beet harvester, plough and drill working one behind each other and to leave no land ploughed but not drilled at the end of each day. In this case all would be well with 45 acres of Crowfield Hall’s lovely park land drilled in two days with Skyfall – a modern bread making wheat.

One view I would love to experience when time travel is available , is Crowfield Hall and Park in its 18 Century heyday.  It must have been stunning.  The mansion, with its moat and the driveway sweeping through the park, with views down the valley towards Coddenham.  The various woods carefully planned and planted to create landscape interest as well as providing game and fuel and the walk across to Crowfield church for family and servants, with Stonham’s 10 bells ringing out and Squire Ecclestone’s estate band on the ropes.  For those reading who have not enjoyed the footpaths across Crowfield Hall, which Roger and Sue keep well maintained, I encourage you to experience them.

Back at Broughton Hall, we still have some herbicide to apply when we are able to cross the land without too much mess.  Our latest batch of pigs have arrived and have settled in very well.  They decided from day one that their sole aim in life was to keep the feed mill fully employed and have already cleared their six tonnes of starter food a week earlier than usual.

Once again East Suffolk Morris Men will be celebrating Plough Monday in ,the now, traditional fashion.  On Monday January 11th we wil carry the plough from Does Field at 7.30pm calling at each of the closes down the street and finishing at the Village Hall for cakes, ale, music and song at aabout 9.30pm.  please come and join the procession with tankards, bells and whistles.  The hall is open to  all and loves a party!!

Happy New Year to you all

DAVID TYDEMAN