Wildlife Friendly Cheese – a first for the Trust In partnership with a local farmer, Simon Weaver, the Trust has developed its first Greystone’s Single Gloucester Cheese.
The official launch, well ‘cutting of the cheese’ took place at the Moreton-in-Marsh show on 1st September along with the help of rare breeds advocate, Joe Henson MBE and his son, Countryfile presenter, Adam Henson
Simon Weaver, organic cheese maker said: “As an organic farmer and neighbour of Greystones Farm, working with Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust to create a delicious, artisan cheese seemed like a really exciting thing to do on such a historic and wildlife rich farm !”
Gloucester cattle play a vital role in the management of the wild flower meadows at Greystones Farm nature reserve. The reserve boasts an archaeology walk, with a scheduled ancient monument dating back to Neolithic age and visible ramparts. It’s an excellent place to escape to, with glorious wild flower meadows. The river eye runs through the reserve and provides a multitude of wildlife to discover.
The cheese has a Protected Designated Origin (PDO), so can only be made here in Gloucestershire, and is one of only five producers in the world. A donation to Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust will be made from the sales of the handmade Greystones Single Gloucester Cheese enabling the nature reserve to provide a sustainable income for the benefit of wildlife and local people.
The charity and cheese maker have joined forces to make a new organic single Gloucester cheese including using Gloucester cattle that will graze the Trust’s Greystones Farm nature reserve in Bourton-on-the-Water.
Tom Beasley-Suffolk, the Farm’s nature reserve manager said: “ the continuity of traditional hay making and grazing with cattle play a vital role in the management of the wild flower meadows at the Farm, so creating a PDO cheese is a great way for people to understand the connection between wildlife and food.”
The species rich meadows have been managed in the same way of taking hay and grazing for many years possible as long as 350 years. The wide range of native grasses and flowers thrive in this low nutrient level environment where one species cannot out compete and dominate the other plants. Due to the loss of hay meadows in the UK the Trust is restoring other fields on the farm to improve the range of wildflowers to increase this rare habitat and for other animals such as insects which are important for pollinating plants such as bees and as a food for other animals.
All habitat features on the farm are managed for a wide range of wildlife such as the hedges, which are traditionally layed to create different stages of hedge growth for the varying needs of different birds.
For list for where you can purchase Greystones Single Gloucester Cheese visit http://www.simonweaver.net/market-diary/