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Vivienne Cockburn took home baking to another level when we visited her at Hay Farm Heavy Horse Centre near Etal '“ the only rare breed approved heavy horse centre in the country.

Monday, 6th August 2018, 9:00 am

There was a selection of scones, date and walnut loaf and huge slices of delicious cakes.

The tour took us first into the horse-drawn machinery shed, which included a potato planter, turnip seeder, corn drill, hay rakes, reaper, binder and heavy rollers, giving us an idea of how hard these horses had worked.

Husband Derek answered questions on their work, before helping our wheelchairs in the next building, which housed a mare and foal and led to the harness room.

Talented daughter Anna brings on the young stock, as well as being a judge and qualified harness maker. She explained how the original heavy collars were made of straw covered in a wool fibre, much more comfortable for the horses than the modern, leather-covered ones, which don’t absorb sweat.

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Outside, we had our photos taken with Teddy, the 19hh black stallion, before visiting the Farmers’ Market.

The day ended with a lovely late lunch in the attractive, refurbished Black Bull in Etal.

Our thanks to Ann Omand, a member’s wife, who raised more than £130 at Ord House Fair, which included her lovely jewellery.