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Townhead Farm was established around 1740, and through the years the land, its agriculture and its ownership has seen many changes. Comprising a mixture of woodland, pasture, hedgerows, stone dikes, and small burns. It is situated just to the east of Helensburgh with views overlooking the Clyde and the town.

In 2001 John and Debbie bought Townhead farmhouse with no land, but in 2009 were offered the oppor unity of buying fields adjacent to the house, and so Townhead Farm flickered to life again. Restoring Townhead back to a small working farm took time and effort, fences needed replacing, walls repairing, hedgerows replanting and woodland managing.

The introduction of livestock required improvement to pasture, addition and repair of buildings, better systems for animal welfare and new storage facilities for food and produce.


Nearly 15 years into this journey, John, Debbie and son Findlay have a thriving Free Range poultry business supplying eggs throughout the locality. Sheep, Cows, Goats, Pigs, Geese and Bees all enjoy foraging in the Townhead fields, and with minimum food miles, support their ‘Farm to Fork’ ethos.


Ancient Oaks, Ash, Birch, Sycamore, Hazel and Blackthorn dominate the woodland areas, providing rich sources of pollen and habitat; with mature hedgerows providing bountiful supplies of
blackberries, sloe berries and a multitude of flora and fauna.

 

The Story of Jelly Legs.

In 2020 Debbie went to a sheep auction to buy a breeding ram and also bought four pedigree Blue faced Leicester ewes (female sheep). In January when the sheep were scanned to confirm
pregnancy the scanner marked one ewe as having twins and described one as being very large and the second being so small and not likely to be born alive.

 

On the 8th April 2022 the ewe gave birth to two live female lambs, one was very large and weighed 8kg, the second was 1kg and unable to stand. Her back end worked perfectly well but the front end and no muscle at all with legs like jelly. What she did have going for her though was a will to keep going and try. There was only one place for her and that was in the kitchen in front of the Aga for warmth and the dogs for company.

 

A vet was consulted but had not seen this before, research showed that this was probably white muscle disease which is caused by a lack of the mineral selenium. The thinking is that her very much
larger sister who remained with Mum had absorbed most of the goodness when they were in the womb causing this deficiency in the now named ‘Jelly Legs’.


Lambing is always busy but when any of the Townhead Team had any downtime they sat this lamb on their laps and gave her physio. The dogs took an active part too, particularly Chic, a rescue  Belgian Shepherd Malinois who loved cleaning up Jelly Legs and cuddling into her.

 

It took a week for her to stand up for the first time and several days after that she was able to spend a short time outside in the barn each day with the other pet lambs. On sunny days she went out for
a short walk with the dogs.


As she grew and the legs strengthened her right leg became very strong, her left leg works well but if you look closely you can see it is slightly weaker.


Jelly legs is now 18 months old 51kg and very much the Townhead Farm Pet. She enjoys human and canine company and will remain at the farm for life.

 

Distilled and crafted using traditional methods, Jelly Legs Gin is infused with Bramble juice and spices. Explore the flavours over ice or with a mixer of your choice.

Jelly Legs Bramble Gin

£24.00Price
  • Origin: Created by Townhead Farm, Helensburgh

    Botanicals: Brimming with juicy, sweet-tart berry flavours, this luscious Bramble Liqueur has been created by us at Townhead Farm. It is a stunning addition that no at-home bar would be complete without.

    History: Named after a lamb with a huge personality and will to live... who also enjoys snacking on Brambles!

    Perfect G&T: Distilled and crafted using traditional methods. Infused with Bramble juice and spices. Explore the flavours over ice or with a mixer of your choice.

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