UPDATE ON THE BARN JULY 2020
After four months of almost complete inactivity at The Barn due to the Coronavirus pandemic we are pleased to announce that we are open for business from July 4th 2020.
Whilst it has been very quiet in respect of visitors, the locals in Holwick-and I include the animals as well as residents in that-have been enjoying the peace and quiet.
The song thrushes that built nests that failed in each of the last two years did not return this year but we have had partridges and a full pheasant family: mum, dad and chicks, all picking up scraps from the feeders. Several families of ducks commute regularly up and down the stream. At the front of The Barn we have a nesting pair of Chaffinches in the Jasmine and a pair of Spotted Flycatchers sat on eggs in the Forsythia. Lapwing, Curlew, Golden Plover and Swallows all returned as normal although some of the locals say they are in reduced numbers.
The owls are back. In fact mum never leaves, she has found a mate but this year did not nest in the owl box but somewhere else nearby, possibly in the roof space of the pub. They had THREE chicks which they did well to rear and get out of the nest. Sadly one did not survive but the remaining two seem strong and healthy and can often be seen and heard around The Barn most evenings.
The warm, dry spring was ideal for lambing but the prolonged drought was potentially a problem for the grass. The rain of the last few weeks seems to have done the trick and the meadows are starting to develop their full range of species.
The lockdown has been difficult for the local economy as it relies heavily on tourism for income. Sadly one casualty has been the Strathmore Arms which will not be reopening this weekend. The pub is up for sale and there has been interest, hopefully it will bounce back with new owners who will carry on the great job that Anthony and Selina have done over the last nine years.
In recent weeks we have been working hard to get The Barn ready for guests. Most of the work has been outside, painting all the woodwork and tidying up the garden. Some time has also been spent with paperwork related to Covid 19 and the business. A risk assessment has been completed, an enhanced cleaning regime is in place and the website updated. This has all meant that ‘We’re Good to Go’, which is a government scheme that recognises the business has followed government and industry COVID-19 guidelines, ensuring processes are in place to maintain cleanliness and aid social/physical distancing.