Category Archives: Gold Hill Organics

For the good of all the Community


I hope that you are all coping with our English Summer, I know I have been colder some days and nights lately than in Winter, oh and the rain and we still don’t have enough water to go around.

I entered the scary world of North Dorset Planning Committee and it was a real eye opener.

How we are going to marry the needs of the many to those of well meaning small groups ? I just do not know ! Whilst respecting everyone’s right to have their say, at some stage there has to be a notion “For the good of all the Community”

North Dorset’s approach to Sustainability and our targets for renewable energy leave us languishing far behind other Counties in Britiain who are doing more than their fair share.

Its time we in Dorset stood up and opened our eyes to the responsibility we all share and the need for greater emphasis on renewable energy.

To do this we need groups, communities to work with planners, project installers, funders so that together they can create their own local sustainable projects that all add towards the collective good of our Countries commitments.

The time is now, get involved take a look at Dorset Energized, support your local Stur Valley Energy Group but above all do something.

Please pass this message onto anyone you know, light up our County and make us top of the UK league not bottom.

On another point if anyone knows of a chill display unit that they don’t want or use Gold Hill Organics would love to hear from them. They have a project to turn more of their wonderful Veggies and sales into ready to use servings.

You can get their contact number and address by going to our Food Map,they would be really pleased to hear from you,

Best Wishes, Vince


Foraging in 2012 with The Natural Path

Hello Lovely people!

I hope this email finds you well and enjoying Spring?

For those who have contacted me about foraging or anyone who is keeping an eye out… sorry for the wait… however, here it is!

As a lot f you know, my winter job is Coppicing and Hedge laying. Well, its been a very busy Hedge laying and Coppicing season this year. What with the leaves dropping late last Autumn everything we had to achieve became a bit of a hurry, and we had a lot to achieve before the leaves came back on this Spring! A Whopping 11.5 hectares of Coppice was restored throughout Dorset and Wiltshire and nearly 1 mile of hedge was layed.

But enough of that! Its the foraging your here for! Now Spring has leapt into action there is a plethora of wild and tasty things to forage for. There is no excuse not to get out there and gather something wild to add to your dinner!

The first date for a Forage walk will be Saturday May 5th and will be held at in and around the hedgerows of GoldHill Organic farm in Child Oakford.  Cost is £10 per person, spaces are limited so that you get the best of my attention.

The first Taster Day will be on Saturday May 19th when I will be focusing on gathering things which we can make free Booze from… Elderflowers, Gorse, Colts Foot…

Its a whole day submerged in Nature sampling her alcoholic delights and learning to make your own (hic) Cost is £50 per person & booking is essential!

Please have a look at my web site for more information on those and all the other foraging events.

You’ll find all the years dates listed there along with information about the venues. This year things have changed quite a bit.  I will be expending into other venues to forage in more deeply in specific habitats. Take Goldhill Organic Vegetable farm for example, Last year I did a couple of days forestry on this delightful farm tucked away in the heart of the village. You can find out more about them here.  Being organic their hedgerows are packed to the gunnels with fabulous wild greens and herbs (the Horseradish is extraordinary!)  There is also Holton Lee for fantastic seashore foraging with its wide ranging salt marsh and waters edge laden with sea weeds, a safe marine environment to harvest from. More information on that venue is here

Robin Wood on the Wiltshire boarders supplied me with an abundance of fungi as it has a multitude of woodland habitats from Broadleaf to Conifer. As for Spring head in Fontmell, this is without question the most phenomenal venue for my wild flower meadow forages during the summer, the heady scent of sweet nectar and blowsy butterflies are not to be missed on a hot summers day!

Have a look, see what you think and let me know if you want to come play, I look forward to catching up with you over 2012.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions or need further information.

Warm spring wishes, Lucie

07903 587 376

Weeding Parties at Gold Hill, every Wednesday at 5pm

Local Food Producers working hard to serve the community

Whatever The Weather

Update from Gold Hill Organic Farm blog

First it was the mild winter weather, then rain, then the vicious winds which ripped two of our poly tunnels (they’ve been patched up so salad leaves saved), and now the big freeze that we’ve all been waiting for.  It’s no wonder us Brits are so weather obsessed.

Our vegetables are pretty weather intrigued and have been doing strange things, but we seem to have it all under control.  It can make planning what we plant and when challenging, but Andrew, who has been growing our gorgeous vegetables now for over 25 years, has learnt to be flexible after all this is nature and we cannot dictate what happens, we have no influence over our weather system.

Luckily our vegetables are pretty robust and we have plenty of green leafed varieties to satisfy every hungry soul. Our cabbages have done particularly well along with the very popular and perfect purple sprouting broccoli.  Our enormous lush leeks have been admired by all and we still have plenty of hardy and sensational squashes and those, either love or hate them nuggets of greenness -yes the humble sprout. This all comes with a warning as we are about to enter our hungry season when things become leaner, and creative cooking comes into its own – so if you have any great recipes that show how to stretch your vegetables do let us know.  On display in the shop soon will be a wonderful recipe for stuffed onions which only really needs 2 onions to feed about 8 people, it’s a real winter winner..

How people around Sturminster are saving money and energy

ENERGIZE STUR VALLEY is a ground level community group which wants to help you reduce your energy use, save money and reduce your carbon footprint for all the residents of Sturminster Newton and the surrounding villages from Child Okeford to Marhull, Hazelbury and Glanvilles Wooton who want to keep a lid on our rising energy use and the bills it generates.

FREE Insulation grants

We spoke to Tim Evans of the group who said “In these tight financial times I could not believe people had not made the simple call it takes to get a grant for their home to be insulated. One FREE call to the independent Dorset Energy Advice Centre (0800 975 0166) was all it took to understand which grants are available and what you can do to insulate your home and start saving money on heating bills.

With costs of energy forecast to more than double in the next 2 years you would have to be mad not to pick up the phone and claim the money.”

Appeal for Energy Champions

If like us you want to help your street, village, school or church community do something practical to reduce your dependence on energy then Energize Stur Valley wants to hear from you.  We hold a monthly meeting where we make sure we get things done rather than just talk about it.  Sturquest and Sturminster TTN websites magazine and  we hope local parish magazines are interested in carrying our suggestions.

Generating income after FITS from renewable energy

Sara and Andrew Cross at Goldhill Organic Farm have just installed solar PV panels on their new cafe at the Organic Farm in Child Okeford.  “We could not believe it started working even with the recent mid winter sun heavily clouded over and we expect it to generate close to £1500 per year.”  Local providers tell us that even though the government has reviewed the subsidy payments, people investing in the new year will see the costs drop by aroud a quarter so contrary to the news the returns on your money are still liklely to be better than sticking it in the bank.

For an electronic copy of the Free Advice flyers, to join us and make a difference we would love to hear from you or for some real world advice on the steps you can take please email

SATURDAY 26th NOVEMBER 11am-3pm, Anonymous Travelling Market at Gold Hill Organic Farm

Apple Juicing at Gold Hill on Sunday 9th October

At 11.00 am there were kilos of apples lying on the ground of our Mozaic Orchard. By one a small group of people had harvested about half the total crop.

This afternoon I took the apples to Gold Hill Farm Organics and we now have 60/70 litters of fresh juice that will be available at Harvest Festival and other occasions.

This coming Saturday Janet is leading a team to harvest the remainder of the apples that you can all get involved with. Either in the Orchard on Saturday morning or at Gold Hill Organics on Sunday where they will be turned into wonderful golden juice.

Try and get along to one of the events and be a part of bringing in this valuable harvest.

Equally you can also take your own apples along to Gold Hill Farm and have them juiced to give you great juice throughout the Winter.

There will be lots going on, you may wish to have your tree variety identified, enter the apple cake competition or go for farm walks, drink cider etc

For further information go to details on this page