Hill Top Farm - Robotic Milking visit - 28 June 2018
DWho would have thought farming could be so 'high tech'? The whole process of cows coming in for milking, to feeding them , giving them a comfortable place to lie down while they waited their turn to the actual milking operation itself, to cleaning the Milking Shed, are all operated by computer with no human intervention. And the cows decide when they want to be milked and how often.
The milking stations are all automated with lasers guiding the cups to the cows udders. The machines even wash the cows udders beforehand and apply lanolin after the milking has taken place. And if the there's a problem with the milk the machine detects it and removes it from the system.
As you can imagine with such an automated process it relies on a constant power supply for both the machinery and computers so the farm has its own back up generator to kick in in seconds should the main power supply fail, just like a hospital.
Did you know the cows even get water beds to lay on! Many thanks to the farmer, Vic Truman, who personally conducted the tour. Take a look at some photos below from our visit.
Stokes of Lincoln visit - 22 May 2018 If you think coffee is just coffee then think again! Since 2017 Stokes is now located at 'The Lawns', a Grade 11 listed Georgian building which previously served as a Mental Hospital, but is now being revitalised as their Roastery, Barista Training Centre and cafe. Our visit started in the cafe with coffee and scones with jam and cream. We were then given a fantastic guided tour by Nick, the great grandson of the founder, Robert Stokes. And he was expertly helped by one of his very enthusiastic roasting experts who explained how you can change the taste experience of the same coffee beans simply by changing the temperature and time in which you roast the beans. It's an art form, not just science! The tour finished in the wonderful theatre room which has been refurbished and is now used for concerts, plays and performances. Many of us stayed on to have lunch in their Lawn Cafe. Take a look at the slideshow below.
Great British Sports Car visit at Boughton We had a very interesting trip looking around the factory and looking at the kit cars.
Tour of Brackenhurst Campus - 23 March 2018 A fascinating insight into what goes on at Brackenhurst and the challenges they face, ably given us by William Donger, the Farm & Rural Estate Manager at Brackenhurst. (He's the man we are all listening to in the second photo of the slideshow below.)
Backstage tour of Nottingham Playhouse - 13 Dec 2017 Another interesting visit demonstrating just what goes on 'behind the scenes' to make a theatre run smoothly
Visit to the School of Violin Making & Repair, Newark - 6 Dec 2017 A fascinating & informative insight into the world of violin making.
Visit to Linney Printers in Mansfield, March 2017