Shrub Farm is Grade 2 listed late 16th century (in most part) farmhouse stood in around 8 acres of land – 2 acres around the house that could be considered a type of garden, plus three fields of around 2 acres each. As well as the farmhouse itself, there are a number of agricultural outbuildings including a timber-frame barn, which would probably date back to when the farmhouse was built, a cartlodge, an 18th century brick shed which might have been a dairy, nissan huts which were probably taken from a nearby airfield and sundry other sheds and animal shelters – some of which have falled down. Interestingly, close to where we want to build, there are the remnants of a cob (clay lump) building, which is a traditional style of building that probably most closely resembles straw bale construction.
There is also a large concrete blockwork shed dating from the 1960s which we want to knock down to make way for our staw bale holiday let.
Shrub Farm was last used for actual farming (as a smallholding) in 1996, since then it had pretty much been left to run wild – and in the six years since we bought it we have been gradually taming it (while still trying to keep it as wild as possible) – adding a veg patch, an orchard, planting a wood on one of the fields and setting up the canopy layer for what will hopefully become a permaculture forest garden.