We would like to state our environmental philosophy at Hare Farm, living as we do in a rural idyll.
The farm thrives on a healthy balance between breeding sheep and nurturing the environment. We are part of DEFRAs environmental schemes, meaning encouraging biodiversity is integral to the farming system we run here at Hare Farm.
New hedging has been planted each year, covering miles of field margins. The hedges are double fenced to ensure they thrive.
Many of our pastures are low input areas, especially the marshlands either side of the River Brede, with minimal fertiliser and grazing.
We created a new lake in 2012 just 200m west of the farmyard. Its natural springs and position in the trough of a natural amphitheatre, have resulted in a haven for wildlife, including ducks, coots, frogs, dragon and damsel flies and many pond plants.
In 2013, we planted an orchard of 30 trees.
Two pairs of barn owls live at Hare Farm, one pair in the Sussex Barn, adjacent to the Oast. Touch wood, and you’ll enjoy the spectacle of the owls in flight, out hunting.
Reducing Carbon Footprint
Considering the environmental impact in what we do, is key to how we function.
Solar panels were added to a new farm building in December 2013 and we now harvest our own electricity, plus export renewable energy into the national grid. You will be using Hare Farm’ s own renewable electricity during daylight hours (even on a gloomy day) so please try and use appliances by day, where you can. Please also turn lights off when not needed, as well as the heated towel rails which can be a high energy drain. The shepherd’s hut itself has no electricity, but easily lit with candles and torches.
We separate our waste and pay BIFFA to have as much of it recycled as possible. Glass, cardboard, plastics, and green waste are all recycled.
We provide logs for the wood burners, sourced from trees across the farm, which have fallen and died, reducing the need for the oil-fired boiler or immersion to work. A wood burner not only makes for a cosy home, it also is a green alternative.
Our loyal, hard working collies cut down the use of the quad bike or Landrover, 10 fold. It’s a joy to watch them work, and a bonus to save our own legs (and wheels).
When staying with us we hope you enjoy and appreciate one of the reasons we originally came here, namely the total absence of light or sound pollution. While doing so, please forgive us the the occasional burst from the quad bike, Landrover, tractor or farm dogs.- one of the necessities for keeping Britain farming.
We would also like to encourage you to leave your car here, borrow one of our walking maps and explore some of the countryside. Walking to the pub makes your pudding and beer taste much sweeter.
Our tradesmen (builder, electrician, plumber), cleaning support and laundry company are all based within a 10 mile radius of Hare Farm. Our welcome pack is full of products that have been sourced locally. And rather than pop out by car to grab some essential food items, another walk to the pub will suffice. The Red Lion have their own “shop” selling breads, eggs, bacon and more.
Preserving the Landscape
The Oast was falling down, having been disused when hop-picking ceased to exist from 1970. We have saved a historic feature of the Weald of Sussex’ landscape, and have sensitively restored the Oast to ensure it remains true to its history and secure in the Brede Valley for a very long time.
Another historic, unique building, the Sussex barn has also been restored (2012), saving it from crumbling away. The resident barn owls survived the transition well, and they continue to breed in the barn’s owl box, year after year.
We introduced a shepherd’s hut in 2012. Just one. Too many glamping sites offer many of one thing. We won’t do that, for fear of spoiling the landscape and becoming too commercialised.
Authenticity is key to all that we do.