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Announcement: Pawprints and Tam O’Shanter Farm

Pawprints Wirral Wildlife teams up with Tam O’Shanter Farm for a whole new era in wildlife and animal care and for enhanced public enjoyment of open spaces and nature.

Pawprints Wirral Wildlife Rescue is delighted and proud to announce that with immediate effect we are taking on the management of Tam O’Shanter Urban Farm, Boundary Road, Bidston.

This does not mean the whole area is suddenly becoming a wildlife reserve – far from it, although there will be a change in ethos as every animal under Pawprints care will be protected for the period of its natural life.

Nor does it in any way diminish our commitment to the amazing bespoke designed Hoggery in Hoylake where we will continue to care for and rehabilitate injured, underweight and needy hedgehogs and hoglets. This will continue to be Pawprints HQ and will remain The West Wirral Hedgehog Hospital but taking on this new challenge will greatly enhance our ability to care for Wirral Wildlife and we have many ideas and challenges yet to formulate into plans.

We hope to develop training, education, awareness and a centre of excellence in wildlife management that can be replicated and used in other areas of Wirral.

We will be able to offer supported and managed placements for volunteers, Duke of Edinburgh Scheme placements, opportunities for Brownies, Guides, Cubs, Scouts, Schools, Colleges……the list is endless.

All Pawprints volunteers will be Enhanced DBS Checked and we will introduce a schedule of training in Safeguarding, First Aid, Mental Health Awareness and more as appropriate and relevant to the public we will serve and the volunteers under our wing.

This much-loved fixture of our communal childhoods is going right back to where it started and will once more be that refuge from the insanity of the modern world, creating memories for today’s children that they will one day share with children of their own.

We will effect and oversee the biggest refurbishment, regeneration and renewal since the 1970’s and we will be inviting EVERYONE to take part. Plans are underway for the most loved community project ever seen in Wirral.

Working with a huge budget of slightly more than a tenner, we will encourage sponsorship, donation, voluntary support, working parties, sponsored challenges, investments, grant funders and more.

We are creating a mammoth pile of worksheets to list all the separate jobs that need doing on the farm and we will tackle them one by one – not necessarily in order, but as time, funds, (wo)manpower, weather and energy allows.

Right now – what we need is for YOU to tell everyone that we are SO open for business and that this is the start of a whole new project.

First refurbishments are well underway, and the overgrown allotments site will soon be ready for planting up for spring crops. Major stable and barn area refurbishments are scheduled for 30th October – 5th November during which time there is likely to be some additional traffic on the farm around the courtyard area.

In time we will be looking for your memories, photos, suggestions, ideas and plans and we aim that by Easter 2019 we will be ready to host a Bank Holiday party to remember.

Help us make 2019 the “Year of The Farm”.

Contact thefarm@pawprintswildlife.co.uk or call 07775-903-462 for information, engagement and updates.

Josephine Woods MBE (formerly Burns) on behalf of The Pawprints Team

This announcement may be downloaded in either PDF or JPEG formats.

Two New Goats

The farm recently welcomed two new goats – Tilly and Tina. Tilly has a minty stripe down her nose and Tina has a patch that looks like a very fat ‘T’ on her forehead. They are Bagot goats, born early last spring; the Bagot is an interesting and endangered breed with records dating back to the 14th century in England. They are small and hardy, and very attractive. After a quarantine period in the animal house they will be let out into the paddocks to enjoy the extra space. There is a lot more information on the breed here.

Bagot goat at Tam O'Shanter Farm

Bagot goat at Tam O’Shanter Farm

Tilly and Tina

Tilly and Tina

Changes in Farm Livestock

Important Notice

During the winter there will not be as many animals here on the farm. This will allow us to give the land a rest; it has suffered from too many animals being kept on it for too long, especially sheep and goats.

We know that visitors expect to see a lot of animals here, but animal welfare is very important. Please understand that, on a farm this small, having too many animals damages the land and is unhealthy for the animals.

Woodworkout has left, so staff and volunteers are taking over the day-to-day animal care done by Woodworkout during the week. Having fewer animals will make things easier for them in the winter. In spring we hope to bring some more animals onto the farm for visitors to see.

The Angora goats are now at Forget-Me-Not Care Farm at Carr Farm where Woodworkout now works. Some poultry, rabbits and guinea pigs have also moved there. The piglets have grown up and gone for meat. Money from meat sold each year helps the farm to carry on keeping pigs.

Thank you for reading this. We value all our visitors and the support they give the farm; please keep visiting.

Tam O’Shanter Cottage Urban Farm Trust reg. charity no. 505444