Coaxdon Farm lies in seven acres of beautiful East Devon countryside close to the borders with Dorset and Somerset and on the edge of the Blackdown Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The traditional Devon longhouse is a listed building, built in the 17th century as a working farm supplying produce to neighbouring Coaxdon Hall. The farmhouse originally included a cider press using apples from the farm's orchards to make the local cider that formed part of the pay for the workers. The best labourers received up to two gallons per day so it's not surprising that the practice was eventually outlawed in 1887. Some of the cider apple trees still remain and we are extending the orchard to bring cider-making back to Coaxdon.
In our fields we have sheep, honey bee hives, and a flock of free-range chickens led by "Chanticleer" the cockerel. The hens provide all the fresh eggs for your breakfast.
The farm enjoys a variety of wildlife. Look out for signs of badger and deer in the woods, and the unmistakable calls of tawny owls at night. Between May and September the farmhouse is home to greater and lesser horseshoe bats. Swallows and pied wagtails nest in the stables. The stream is home to newts, water voles and dragonflies. Throughout the year you will see the plentiful rabbits, and buzzards and kestrels hunting their prey. Many other birds also make this their home including song thrush, blue tits, long-tailed tits, robin, sparrow, goldfinch, chaffinch, bullfinch, wren. blackbirds, green and lesser spotted woodpeckers and a brood of pheasants.
If you prefer to stay on the farm to relax you can take a gentle walk around our fields, meet the animals or learn about the pottery and bees from your hosts.
Close by, the Jurassic coast offers fossil hunting and superb beach and cliff top walks. Lyme Regis (just six miles away) provides in-shore and deep-water fishing trips, a safe sandy beach, lots of interesting shops and excellent dining. The East Devon coastal towns of Beer, Branscombe, Seaton and Sidmouth are also all within easy reach. The local town of Axminster is famous for both Axminster Carpets and Axminster Tools, and is also home to a River Cottage Canteen and Deli, and River Cottage HQ (for private functions, weddings, cookery courses and corporate events).
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