Restoring Southwood Estate
Southwood Farm is our home farm in North Pembrokeshire – it’s the base from which our heathland conservation grazing programme is run.
Restoring the buildings
Southwood Farm is home to a wealth of history, with the buildings dating back to 1820 and 1850. When the place was left to us in 2003, the farmhouse and its courtyard range required large-scale renovation.
Following lots of hard work by the team, we’re delighted to have given the farmhouse a new lease of life and it’s now being run as a bed and breakfast by our tenants. The range has also undergone major work including re-roofing and a very big tidy up thanks to the help of our volunteer conservation assistants.
Rebuilding the hedgebanks
Through funding from the SITA Trust, we’ve had the opportunity to construct 1.1km of Pembrokeshire hedgebanks across three pasture fields at Southwood, and one in an arable field near Maidenhall car park.
It’s a real boost for conservation as these hedgebanks and their valuable habitats were removed by agricultural changes during the last century. By returning these lost hedgebanks to the landscape we're hoping to see farmland birds and bats around the place, and our cattle have more places to shelter from the coastal winds.
The addition of these hedgebanks has created smaller fields, allowing our Welsh Black cattle to sensitively and efficiently graze the pasture.
Our Welsh Black play an integral part in our conservation grazing programme across Pembrokeshire, eating the heathland and keeping the vegetation in good shape.
Opening up public access
We want you to enjoy as much of Southwood as possible, so we’ve been working on a footpath network to help you see more of the area. Our team of rangers and volunteers have been busy installing gates, sign posts, steps, fencing and bridges, and the first phase of the project is now complete.
Why not come along and follow the new trail? Our coast to coast walk covers 2.5 miles between Maidenhall car park and Pinch Hill, Newgale. We’re continuing to open up more routes around Southwood Farm but access and parking at the farm is currently only available on event days.