As Chapel and Collections Officer at Clumber Park I look after several collections of objects on the Estate, including a museum of agricultural tools donated to the estate in the 1980's.
The collections is called Willow Tree Farm and is housed at a farm in Hardwick Village on the estate. It is open every Wednesdays until October and both May bank holidays and is looked after by a fantastic group of volunteers.
Before it opened again we gave Willow Tree Farm a good deep clean to get rid of the many cobwebs that had gathered there over winter.
Luckily for us it was beautiful weather and with our fab team working hard we had pretty much the whole place finished in a day. Starting from the top, brushing the cobwebs and dust down to sweep it all up. All the objects got a bit of TLC and now look spic and span.
There were several large stone plinths in the barn, blocking one of the door to the farm courtyard so I asked the wonderful Estate Support Team to help me move them out of the way to where they could be admired.
The stone plinths are enormously heavy so the guys used a tele-handler to move them. They made it all look very easy and the plinths are now arranged nicely and not getting in our visitors way.
There are lots of interesting bits tucked away at Willow Tree Farm, from a life-size plastic cow (her name is Gertrude and she's quite famous around these parts!) to some interesting graffiti.
The graffiti shows horses pulling carts and jumping and is in an area that quite possible once housed horses. Maybe these pictures were the stable boys way of inspiring the horses that lived there.
Another equally interesting but distinctly less agricultural thing housed near the farm is the masts to the Lincoln ship. The Lincoln was a replica ship built in miniature for the Dukes to sail on Clumber Lake. The ship was unfortunately sunk and now lies at the bottom of the lake and the masts are no longer with it.
The museum itself showcases the evolution of agricultural equipment, and many of the pieces are still in working order meaning visitors can really get a feel for how farmers work and how food is produced.
There are also plenty of activities for children to have a go at, and the farm is a brilliant spot for a picnic in the sunshine!
As always I have to say a huge thanks to the wonderful volunteers for all their hard work in making what we do possible, and thanks to Sleem for his photos!