|The country park covers an
area of 400 acres, a mix of woodland, riverside and open space. A
network of trails allows exploration of this varied part of the
Hampshire countryside. An informative park map, including walking trails
and points of interest, is included in the Visitor Guide brochure, on
sale in the farm reception. Cycling and horse riding is allowed in
Manor farm is a historical
farm based in the Victorian age. Found at the end of the Country
Park along a winding country lane. Chickens and ducks roam free around
the picturesque farmyard, while a cast of real life historical
characters, including Victorian farmer's wife, Mrs Earwicker, can be
found going about their daily chores. You get to see farm animals, while
anyone old enough to remember the washboard and mangle is sure to recall
many a childhood memory in the charming Victorian farmhouse. Explore the
Victorian schoolroom, wheelwright's shop, blacksmith's forge and the
13th century church.
Activities through the day includes milking at
10:30am and 3:30pm, farmyard walks at 11:30am, meet the animals at 2:15pm, and
school lessons running throughout the day, (whenever the school bell rings).
The history of this farm dates back a long
time, the farm pond is mentioned in the doomsday book, the farmhouse started
over 500 years ago, and had grown over the years. You can still see the
blackened roof timbers, evidence of the domestic fires used for heating and
cooking in the original 15th century open hall.
The various barns and outbuildings that
surround the farmyard are all of historical significance, the oldest dating from
the 16th century. A number of buildings, including the wheelwrights' shop,
blacksmith's forge and the Longstock staddle barn, were moved from their
original locations around Hampshire and re-erected at Manor Farm.
Manor farm was originally at the centre
of the village of Botley, with the pond overlooking the parish church,
but with the development of the main road a mile to the north in
the 1800's the village has grown up around the road, leaving Manor
Farm now isolated. Nearby is the chancel of the 13th century church
overlooking the pond.
Modern parts like tin roofs and the like have
been removed, the farm you see today accurately reflects the development of
Hampshire farming over the past five hundred years, but remaining now positioned
in the Victorian age.
There are a small number of event days,
to see the list.