We are preparing for our Wild Boar Inn Wedding Showcase in February. Here’s a peak at one of the wedding suppliers that will be attending. Something a little different for your Hen Party, or even a wedding guest experience.
Here’s a wedding experience with a difference. Ever wondered what it takes for a farmer to round up his sheep quickly and efficiently? Well, now is the chance for your wedding party to get up close and watch a Sheepdog Demo. The stars are the well trained, intelligent border collie sheepdogs working a complicated agility course to round up a herd of Runner Ducks! Younger members of the party can even have a go trying to get the ducks through a couple of tunnels.
Or perhaps it is an event that would tick the right box for your Hen Party.
Al and Chris Bradley, semi-retired farmers, run the hugely popular Lake District Sheepdog Experience. Their courses get fantastic reviews and are open to anyone, with lots of added hilarity around Hen ‘Do’s.
‘Hen parties are usually a great success. They are just so full of jollity and we have such a laugh. We set out an agility course for them with tunnels, slides and water. Al and I head different teams and become quite child-like and competitive ourselves!’
Weddings, Hen Parties and corporate events are treated to the amusing spectacle of Runner Ducks, simply because they are easier to transport to your venue.
The Lake District sheepdog experience takes place at Al and Chris’ Totterbank Farm at Crosthwaite. One or two handlers (with family and friend spectators) are taught how to work with the sheep dogs to round up their black Hebridean sheep.
The couple were inspired to start sheepdog handling courses when they discovered that guests to their Lake District B&B were distracted from eating their breakfast by the fascination of watching Al training the sheep dogs. The business grew from there and Al and Chris have welcomed people from all around the world to learn their art.
‘We love to meet people from all walks of life. We’ve worked with stars from Coronation Street and Loose Women, a Russian diplomat, a Japanese TV director who filmed us and a 90-year-old who had sheep herding on her bucket list. City dwellers love the experience and we’ve found that people who can’t speak English often excel because they just copy Al and pick up his tone. Recently we had a visit from an Alzheimer’s group who are going to make regular bookings. They were great to work with and one man, in particular, came to life when he was working with our dogs.’
Al has been around sheep and sheep dogs all his life and he spends all day, every day with his beloved dogs when he can. It’s Al who will teach you the quiet commands, body language and confidence necessary for building a trusted relationship with the dogs.
‘Our dogs are highly trained but also have to have a good temperament. All are individuals but as we train them we must make sure that they are super people-friendly and they aren’t fearful of young people.’
So whether you want a Sheepdog Demo for your wedding day, a Hen Party experience with a difference, or a pre-wedding Lake District Sheepdog Experience for you and your partner, Chris and Al are more than happy to tailor something for you.
Come along to The Wild Boar Wedding Showcase on 24th February, 12 noon – 4 pm and meet Al and Chris in person, as well as a host of other wedding suppliers.
Wedding at The Wild Boar Photo: Lisa Aldersley