Blagdon Estate in Northumberland was the location for the 2018 White Park Cattle Society AGM and Open Day, kindly hosted by Viscount Ridley.
Blagdon Estate has been in the ownership of the White/Ridley family since 1698 and is a business that includes farms, woodland, residential and commercial properties. The Estate is also home to the Blagdon Herd of White Park cattle.
Our day commenced in the Clock Room on the Estate where, after morning tea, we held our AGM and Open Forum. Following lunch the tour of the Estate commenced. We firstly visited the garden in front of the house where Viscount Ridley gave us a run down of his family history. We then walked over to see the Blagdon herd of White Park cattle, which were grazing calmly in front of the house in a field next to the cricket pitch. The WPCS members then climbed on to a trailer and were given a tour of the Estate which included a visit to the businesses in the Milkhope Centre, land which had been re-instated following open cast coal mining and is which now thriving with wildlife and, finally, the dairy unit. We concluded our afternoon with tea and cakes back at the Clock Room.
The Open Day finished in style with a three-course evening meal at the Ridley Arms which comprised a main course of delicious White Park beef, supplied by the Estate.
The Society would like to thank Viscount Ridley for welcoming us to his home, Estate Manager Andrew Crewdson for his help in organising the visit and Estate staff David Conner and Harry Baker Cresswell for joining us on the guided tour.
It was a wonderful day in a beautiful location and was enjoyed by established and newer members alike.