The Cowdray Estate hosts corporate entertainment, hospitality events and multi leisure activities events on our 16,500 acre Estate, a large proportion of which is forestry and agricultural land.
The Cowdray Estate is near Midhurst, West Sussex close to the borders of Surrey and Hampshire, just one hour from London. The Cowdray Estate offers leisure activities such as fishing and wildlife experiences – including badger watching.
The Cowdray Estate also offers filming locations, venues for your events, wedding reception venues – please contact the Leisure Office at Cowdray Park Golf Club for more information.
The Cowdray Park Polo Club is now one of the largest in Britain with over 700 non-playing members. The main event of the year is the Gold Cup, which is held in July and has become gradually bigger and better each year.
SUMMER NEWSLETTER 2015 : Our Summer newsletter is now in circulation. Pick up a copy when you are next at Cowdray or download it here: Summer Newsletter 2015
SUSSEX LIFE MAGAZINE: Lady Cowdray is pleased to be writing a column for the county magazine Sussex Life. See below the September article and click links to previous editions.
I mentioned last year that our dairy operation was undergoing a massive transformation. This was completed a few months ago and we are seeing the results of all the planning that went into it. Moor Farm is the hub of Cowdray’s farming activity, all of which is run by our Farms Manager, David Hamilton-Fox. The scale of the administration required to run such a large operation is quite something as Cowdray Home Farms acts as the contractor for the other in-hand farming business on the Estate.
With sustainability at the forefront, our investment in a new dairy demonstrates a long term commitment to the milk industry. The new modern facility utilizes the latest technology and ensures that the health and wellbeing of the dairy herd is not compromised, whilst staying competitive in a market controlled by global milk prices and EU regulation.
The existing cattle building which housed 270 cows in cubicles was completely transformed. The old asbestos roof was stripped off and replaced with a new roof made up of 30 % clear panels. The side walls were reduced in height and new weather-controlled screens installed which, when it is not raining or too cold, open fully to give the building a great airy and light feeling.
A new parlour building has been attached to the cubicle housing. The building gives a huge amount of space, which allows much better cow-flow. The new large collecting yard has an automatic backing gate which also scrapes the yard clean on its return run. The building has been fitted with two 30 kwh solar panel systems on the southern roof elevation. With the benefit of much more efficient electrical equipment, we hope that the solar power will generate enough electricity to run the new parlour and its equipment.
The parlour works a 20:40 rapid exit system which allows the cows to leave the parlour in an instant. Milking time has been halved and the new ice bank system and heat exchange unit cool the milk before it gets into the bulk tank. There is a new handling system which allows automated drafting of cows into groups depending on feed requirements and also allows vets to work on the cows in greatly improved facilities. There is an automated footbath which the cows walk through after each milking keeping their feet healthy.
Tough new waste regulations make the handling and storage of slurry a big issue. The slurry system has been upgraded to include a sophisticated new separator which works like a giant cork screw and wrings the water out of the solid material. Solid material is a lot easier to store and the added bonus is that the separated material, as long as it is 34% dry matter or above, can be used as bedding. This ‘green bedding’ has a similar texture to sawdust, is virtually odourless and can be applied to the cubicles in the same way as shavings. The benefit of the green bedding is that it is wholly recycled material and saves around £3000 per month on buying in shavings through the winter months. We have welcomed various groups of schoolchildren keen to see the new facilities in operation.