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Things to do this Summer:

 Call the Midwife!

Tours at Cragend Farm have started with unexpected new  information coming to light on the very first day, when Eileen Telfer and her daughter Justine, told the amazing story of her great-grandfather.


Joseph Gall, lived at ‘Craghead’ a small dwelling on the south side of the River Coquet opposite Cragend Farm. He worked for Lord Armstrong in the Silo that had been built by Armstrong to make silage using hydraulic power from water. He would take a small boat to cross the river every day unless it was summer when it would have been passable on foot. Classed as an ‘agricultural labourer’ he would have been cutting grass, or digging out silage in the cast stone building on the hill, and helping with the machinery.


His 10 year old daughter, Agnes, was given the very important job one day in 1900, to wave a large white handkerchief as a signal to Joseph to rush to Rothbury to get help as his wife, Molly, was expecting another child.


It brings ‘Calling the midwife’ to another level, as the small child waves the cloth in the hope that her father will see the signal from one side of The Coquet Valley to the other, and get back in time to help her Mothe. All went well, and Joseph (junior) was born without  hitch.

Their tale has been passed on and we are very grateful to Eileen Telfer for giving us the time to tell us all about her relatives, as Joseph is the first named person, known to have worked in the Silo.


On the 2nd June The Coquet Valley yet again displays its amazing ability to alert people to what’s going on in the country when amongst others, Cragend Farm will be lighting a beacon in celebration of The Queens Platinum Jubilee.


One of Lord Armstrong’s enduring heritage sites for the ‘renewables generation’, Cragend Farm hosts historic tours of the site throughout the summer which can be booked through Ticket Tailor, Historic houses website or direct from Cragend Farm.


The Tours will run from 11am to 1pm with a walk and talk tour and discussions for anyone interested in architecture, historic buildings and agricultural and industrial engineering. Pre- Booking is necessary.


Contact Lou Renwick for further information 01669-621533 or visit the Historic Houses website using the link below and book direct or through a ticket link: 



The engineering and design genius of Lord Armstrong of Cragside, led him to create a Model Farm that showed exceptional capacity for ground breaking technology in the 1880’s. The fossil fuel era of motorised machinery has been short-lived and today’s world is starting to revisit these sustainable technologies as a way of combatting global warming and climate change.


The Silo, and its surrounding buildings, once completely derelict, and classed as a Building at Risk, has been partially restored for visitors with a head for heights to go inside the buildings and see the hydraulic machinery designed by Lord Armstrong of Cragside. At over 12 metres deep the Cragend Silo is a unique building and worth a visit.


It constantly leads us to great discussions on how forward thinking Lord Armstrong of Cragside was  and what we can all do in the future.


Thankfully we have mobile phones now to call the Midwife!




  1. Cragend Farm.



About the author

Lou is the owner of Cragend Farm with her husband Shaun, and deals with everything from Holiday Accommodation inquiries to egg collection from the chickens; she is the social media and web design finger-tapper.

Find Out More About Cragend

Cragend Farm has a interesting and diverse history, from technical innovations to historic buildings. Tied in closely to the neighbouring Cragside Estate home of Victorian inventor and industrialist Lord Armstrong.