March 2020 at Stourton
Lincolnshire Tourism Excellence Awards – close but no cigar!
On Thursday 12th March we attended the Lincolnshire Tourism Excellence awards. We were thrilled to have been chosen as finalists in two categories; Experience of the Year – for our Deer Safaris and New Tourism Business of the Year Award.
We removed our wellies and fleeces and got dressed up to go ‘out-out’ along with several members of the Stourton Team celebrating our achievement and inclusion alongside many other brilliant Lincolnshire companies.
We awaited our categories’ announcements with baited breath……. unfortunately this year we didn’t manage to scoop the big awards but we lost out to two great attractions. So we’d like to extend our congratulations to The Old Granary as winner of the New Tourism Business Award and to Cameron Huggins Blacksmith as winner of the experience category. We would also like to congratulate Play Avenue for their Small Visitor Attraction win.
We are however very proud for our efforts to have been recognised at a regional level and it makes us realise how far we have come in the last couple of years with our events and what we can offer here.
Obviously in just 2 short weeks since the awards the world has greatly changed and we are, as yet, unsure what the event calendar is going to now look like for the rest of 2020. At present all events are ‘on hold’. We do not want to place any staff members, suppliers, stall holders or visitors at risk. We will continue to evaluate government advice and will review our events accordingly. In the meantime, please stay home and stay safe.
Venison – Still open for business
We are still open for business when it comes to venison sales.
Whilst we are no longer accepting orders for venison for collection from our farm office we are now offering an online ordering and home delivery service to help customers through the Covid-19 crisis.
To see the full product range please click here.
A minimum of £25 order value gives you free delivery within a 20 mile radius from LN9 5PB – all our venison is frozen, so perfect to keep your freezer stocked up. Dependant upon demand your orders will be delivered on a weekly basis (Tuesday&/ Thursday) and we will be in touch to confirm this after you have placed your order (rather like we do for log orders!).
We also now have a brand new range of frozen venison ready meals in stock, subject to availability.
Brand New – Ready Meals
We have been working with Nikki from Boggle Lane Foods and together we have developed 5 delicious ready meals , under her The HedgeChef brand and these include:
- Venison Hotpot – Serves 1
- Venison with Red Wine and Rowan Berries -Serves 1
- Venison with Anchovies and Rosemary- Serves 1
- Asian style Venison with Honey and Soy – Serves 1
- Venison Meatball Medley –Serves 2
We teamed up with Nikki to help people to try our delicious and healthy venison without having to cook it from scratch themselves. Nikki is passionate about lovingly creating and preparing products from fresh, locally sourced ingredients with absolutely no nasty additives or ‘mass produced awfulness’. All of her ingredients are sourced in Lincolnshire and some are even foraged from the Wolds’ abundant hedgerows and woodland.
Venison Meat Boxes – Email us to order
We are also trialling a limited number of Venison Meat Boxes. These will cost £100 and delivery will be FREE (in a 20 mile radius). Each box will include a selection of joints, steaks, casserole, mince, and sausages and it’s an ideal way to stock up your freezer. If you are interested in a venison box please contact us to discuss and to place your order.
For inspiration we also have added 2 new recipes to our recipe card collection which are available to download or are free with your venison order. You can find our Venison Chilli recipe here which is the recipe we used at our Comedy Night and Christmas event for anyone who attended. Our Venison Pie recipe is great for using with our casserole and braising steaks and can be found here.
Contact Free Ordering and Delivery
As I’m sure you understand, the health and well-being of our customers and staff is of the highest priority so we would prefer it if you could follow the below instructions for as ‘contact free’ an order and collection process as possible.
- Place your venison order online – this minimises cash handling and also ensures you are reserving the venison you require
- We will contact you once we have received your order to confirm delivery day and time and we will then confirm the delivery process
To reassure you – all of our venison is vacuum packed in a protected environment, observing the highest of hygiene standards and then frozen; so has not been directly handled.
If you have any questions about our venison please don’t hesitate to contact us.
On The Farm and Around the Estate
Finally, thanks to the break in the truly dismal weather that has hampered all our efforts this winter and early spring, we are drilling! Over the next few weeks we will be drilling wheat and barley crops, as well as next year’s sugar beet crop. Some of the crops are on time as planned and some are a little later than usual. We are hoping that the good weather holds so we can be confident in producing a crop in most of our fields this year!
Further to that we are spreading fertiliser on already establishing crop which we managed to drill in early autumn.
As well as drilling we have been busily planting 1500 trees around the estate. As part of our ongoing woodland management, planting and felling are vital to maintaining a healthy and ever developing woodland habitat. We are planting a mix of native broadleaf varieties, including a mix of oak, ash and birches which will become home to a huge range of native wildlife species including beetles, slow worms, lichens and fungi as well as larger more familiar mammals like badgers and foxes as well as bird life such as cuckoos, owls, woodpeckers and bats.
Because we have had such a wet winter the land and the soil has become compacted, therefore we are working hard to aerate the land around the estate. Aeration involves using our spiked roller to perforate the soil with small holes to allow air, water and nutrients to penetrate the roots of either the grass or the crop. This helps the roots grow deeply and produce a stronger, more vigorous plant growth
With the change in the weather to actually feel like spring and the fact that the deer don’t need to abide by the social distancing rules we have now turned out last year’s calves out from their winter home in the crew yard to the fields. They were reticent to leave the shelter of the barn initially but are now busy frolicking in the deer park, delighted to be in the warm spring sunshine!
We can also report that Winston has shed his antlers! Stags shed their antlers at the end of the rutting season. This is because their testosterone levels drop and this weakens the hair and bone at the base of the antler and they simply fall off. This is not painful for them and also has the benefit of lightening his mood, so he is much less bolshie to deal with!
Whilst we realise over the next few weeks and months we will all be spending a lot more time at home than usual, we cannot class these products as essential.
So unfortunately whilst we are in ‘lockdown’ we are unable to deliver these to you as we want to follow the government’s advice and keep movements to an absolute minimum to stop the spread of this virus.
We hope to be up & running again soon.
We will keep you up to date as much as possible with estate goings-on on social media. Whilst we now know that we won’t be able to see you here anytime soon, we hope that you and your loved ones stay safe and as close to home as possible for the time being.
Antony and Helen