One Step at a Time - A Tiny Derbyshire Smallholding

Welcome to Merrybower Homestead

This website began as a way for us to record everything we’ve done here at Merrybower; an aid to memory for what we do, when we’ve done it, and why, so hopefully we can learn from our successes, and our mistakes.

As life continues, it has a tendency to become richer, and busier. A small vegetable patch grew into an allotment. Two fruit trees grew in to over eighty. Four rescue chickens grew into a few breeds of chickens, geese, ducks and rabbits (plus the odd waif or stray that finds us).

Today we live as much as we can from the food grown here. Any spare we give away to friends and family, swap with fellow growers, or sell over the garden gate.

Whilst the lifestyle can be quite solitary, the advent of the internet has meant we each can learn so much more, and so much quicker, from others carrying on in a similar fashion, throughout the world. The amount of knowledge people are happy to share is quite staggering, and humbling. Here at Merrybower, alongside the ubiquitous Complete Book of Self Sufficiency by John Seymour, and other specialist books, sits the computer. This opens up literally millions of live books people are writing every day, from which we can all cherry pick the nuggets of information that may help us in our own particular situation. Hopefully someone somewhere might find a nugget or two in our own scribblings, to help smooth their journey just a tad.


Read MoreHay baled in 18″ x 36″ x 14″, made here at Merrybower. The rye-grass, clover, timothy grass mix is perfect for small furries, weeded by hand through the growing season. £12 per bale. Contact us to arrange a pick-up time or free delivery in Barrow parish. Four bales can be delivered within 20 miles for cost of petrol.

Read MoreHaving found a high-quality dog food that our own Penny loves, we have decided to supply the specialist UK-made range of Ancestral Canine products, as their ethos is close to our own hearts. The entire menu is wheat gluten free, using low gluten grains, vegetables and herbs, making the foods palatable and easy to digest.

Read MoreWe are part of an informal group of friends and keen enthusiasts who take an interest in breeding pure breed poultry. To see the breeds we currently have for sale, or those we intend on breeding in the coming year, see below. Please do get in touch if you are interested in any of them.

Latest from the Orchard

  • Cider Plans for 2016October 3, 2016 - 8:15 pm

    Having watched various apples falling over the last few weeks, it’s time again to make cider plans – hurrah! We’ve started supplying a local farm shop with apples and pears – only around 3-4 kg a week, but it’s a wonderful feeling to finally start spreading the fruity love locally! The wonderful thing is that […]

Latest from the Animals

  • Marsh Daisy UpdateAugust 6, 2016 - 10:48 am

    It’s been three weeks since the first Marsh Daisy chicks hatched here at Merrybower, and they’re all looking beautiful to date! Here you can see the five we’ve hatched, mingling with more of our Light Sussex, and the nine Rob has hatched. Ours are shown individually in the gallery below, as we’re handling them to […]

Latest from the Allotment

  • Globe Artichoke Hearts in OilJune 10, 2017 - 10:56 am

    Now in their third year, we can safely say that globe artichokes do well at Merrybower! The first year we had a handful, and last year we steamed some, then the rest went to flower as the kitchen extension meant we had no preparation space to cook! This year we finally have a kitchen where […]

Produce For Sale

At the Garden Gate we have eggs, on the front with the honesty box. Normal sized eggs, bantam eggs and duck eggs – all free-range and fed quality feed. We also add in-season vegetables and fruit, surplus to our own family’s needs.

Apples & Pears
As the fruit season comes into full swing we will have various apples and pears to buy at the garden gate.

Chickens and Geese for Sale

In 2016 our small group of friends hatched Rhode Island Reds, more Derbyshire Redcaps, Welsummers, Cuckoo Marans, Brown Leghorn Bantams, and Light Sussex. Peter, a breeder friend of ours, hatched West of England geese.

Our diary will record the lives of the chicks and goslings if you’d like a nosy at the inner machinations, or if you would just like to chat about the animals, hit the big purple button below!

Contact Us

To have a chat – hit the big purple button!