The proof of our pedigree

Hawbridge Farm has been in the Wood family since 1938 when Walter Wood (senior) purchased the farm.
The farm at that time was very different to now, employing 8 staff and casual labour during potato harvest. The farm was mixed, growing potatoes, cabbages, wheat and barley, we also had a pedigree Aberdeen Angus herd of cattle and a pig rearing unit.

During the second world war Walter (senior) had to stay at home and all the land had to be ploughed and planted with crops to feed the nation.
Over time the farm has become more mechanised, employing less staff.

In 1969 Walter (senior) retired and handed over the farm to Walter (junior) and his wife Gillian.  They had a passion for horses, so along with the cattle and arable Walter and Gill built stables and turned some of the land into paddocks for breeding thoroughbred racehorses.

Walter also loved to plough with his heavy horses, Britt (Suffolk punch) and Dobbin (shire), he won many prizes competing in ploughing matches.

In 1975 Walter and Gill’s younger daughter Juliet left school to come home and work on the farm, she started breeding and training pedigree Labradors, she has a diploma in canine psychology and behaviour and continues to run gundog training classes on the farm.

This brings us to the present day with the fourth generation, Walter (senior) great grandsons, Mathew and Adam Miles, they both have keen interest in land rovers, tractors and cattle. The farm is now completely run by family members

What we are now.

We are a working farm, about 250 acres, with a 150 beef suckler herd, some arable, a few sheep, a donkey (Holly), an Exmoor pony (Honey) and a retired racehorse (Desert Island Disc)!

As a family we are trying to improve the farm all the time, this means diversification and modernising but at the same time caring for our livestock, looking after the land and protecting the wonderful wildlife we have. We are lucky enough to have a barn owl regularly nesting in our barn and kingfishers on our river bank, as well as kestrels, red kites, lapwings and hares running over our fields.

We are now providing some fantastic facilities including a meeting/conference building and an events field for hire.

Our Farming Year

During the year on the farm we are always busy, no matter what the weather.  Here is an outline of what we might be doing:

As soon as the weather improves the boys are out preparing the land for grazing and silage making. Their jobs are varied and no day is ever the same. They start with muck spreading, harrowing and rolling the fields. Fences need to be repaired before any livestock is let out.

Cows and calves are let out to graze on fresh pasture.  We then keep our fingers crossed for fine warm weather so that we can gather in the feed for the coming Winter, silaging, hay making, and baling straw.

As the nights start to draw in, some of cattle are brought back into the barns to start calving. If the weather remains fine, we hope to make a second cut of silage. We need to make as much feed as possible as the Winter weather is so unpredictable.

All the livestock are in and need regular attention. This is the time that we can service the machinery and repair the buildings (hopefully!)