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Smallholding Courses

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Smallholding Courses Wales


Health & Husbandry for Beginners

Whether you already have a few sheep or are preparing to welcome your first arrivals - this course is for you! 

Our one day 'Sheep: Health & Husbandry for Beginners' course will give you the confidence to handle and care for your sheep.  Suitable for anyone with sheep - whether you intend to build up a flock, rear a few for meat, or keep a few special pets.

This course is a mixture of theory and practical experience.  We will spend as much time hands-on with the sheep as needed, to allow you to leave confident in your ability to handle them.  This is a small group course: 6-8  participants - to allow everyone time to get experience with the sheep.

A comprehensive handout will cover all information given on the course (so no need to spend the day scribbling notes!)

A delicious homecooked lunch, featuring produce from our smallholding, is included.

This course can be attended as a standalone, or along with our 'Breeding, Pregnancy & Lambing' course.  

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Course Content:

Before you start:  Choosing the right breed for you.  How and where to buy sheep.  Legislation and paperwork required.

Handling: Essential facilities and handling equipment for small flocks.  Hands-on sheep handling - learn the essentials such as moving sheep, catching, turning, checking and trimming feet. We'll show you how to carry out a general health check, condition score and how to give medications and injections.

Grazing and Feeding: A look at grassland and our rotational grazing system.  Nutritional requirements and feeding the pregnant ewe.

Routine Healthcare: Vaccinations, worming, worm egg counts, footcare and other routine tasks.  How to create a health plan for your flock.

Health Problems:  A look at some of the common sheep ailments, how to treat and prevent problems.

Lambing:  A basic overview of breeding and preparation for a successful lambing season.   We will discuss how a normal delivery should proceed and how/when to assist. For a much more detailed session on lambing, see our 'Breeding, Pregnancy & Lambing' course.

Lunch is included - enjoy a delicious homecooked lunch, including produce from our smallholding.

We want this course to be as useful to you as possible - so if there are specific topics you would like to see covered, please feel free to mention these when booking.  There will be time during the course for discussion and questions.

Ideal pairing with this course: 

Sheep:  'Breeding, Pregnancy & Lambing'

This course looks in detail at preparation required for breeding, keeping your ewes in perfect condition, and dealing with any problems occurring at lambing time.

Attend the two courses in any order - there is no requirement to have attended one before the other.

Your Instructors:

Catriona and Jonathan Benson run Argae Cottage, alongside their roles as veterinary surgeons.

We moved here in 2011, starting out with just 4 acres, 4 sheep and a few chickens.  We've come a long way since then - expanding both the farm and livestock numbers significantly.  We now run a thriving meat box and Christmas turkey business, sell pedigree livestock for breeding, and hold three Great Taste awards for our produce  We can still remember what it's like to be starting out, though, and would love to pass on some of our experience to you.

We have a strong focus on animal welfare and aim for our animals to have as healthy and happy a life as possible.  

Following the course, we are very happy to offer ongoing support for your smallholding adventure - and will be available to answer questions and give you further advice via email.

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Booking Information:



Introduction to Smallholding:    £145

Sheep  (Health & Husbandry)     £145

Sheep  (Breeding & Lambing)     £145

Cattle for Beginners                     £145

Chickens for the Table                 £145

  (includes free range, oven ready chicken to take home)

Your Own Christmas Turkey     £160

  (includes 4kg free range, oven ready turkey to take home)

Pigs to Pork                                         £130

 10% off for two people attending together

Dates:  Courses run from May to October. 

Current dates for each course are shown on the main booking page

Times: Courses run from10am to 5pm     

(Pigs to Pork:  10am - 4pm)

Food:  Lunch is included.  Let us treat you to a delicious, hot meal,  featuring our own free range meat and homegrown vegetables.  Home baking and plenty of tea & coffee are provided during the day.

Ages:  Minimum age 16

Gift Vouchers can be purchased here.  

Course Info:  We will send you a confirmation email after booking.  2 weeks before your course, you will then receive a reminder, containing all the info you will need in advance of the day.  Feel free to get in touch if you have any other questions!

How to Find us:

Argae Cottage is situated on the banks of the River Severn in Wales, just over the Powys/Shropshire border.  

Argae Cottage




SY22 6SQ

Satnav is usually reliable here!

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