Situated on the Nottingham, Lincolnshire and Leicestershire borders, Flawborough Farms is a family owned farm and contract farming agribusiness.
Outline of Farm
Flawborough is a small hamlet situated 7 miles south of Newark, at the northern tip of the vale of Belvoir. Alverton is half a mile to the East.
The village is approached along the crest of a hill and the farmland falls away to the Western boundary, the River Smite. This is a deep channel, with normally only 12 inches of water in, but as it is the vale of Belvoir’s “drain” it can rapidly rise over twenty feet and flood. At the Northern tip of the parish, the river Smite joins the river Devon, also from the vale of Belvoir.
The farmland was originally all pasture with small pockets of arable, no doubt due to the constant flooding, and hence the soil type is predominantly heavy alluvial clay overlying sand and gypsum. As one comes towards the village the soil turns to Lias Clay and Keuper Marl. The soil at Alverton is calcareous limestone falling away to the alluvial clay adjacent to the Rivers Devon and Winter beck.
In the period of 1955-1975, due to the post war directive of farmland having to produce food, all the little fields were amalgamated from a total of thirty five to one large one at Flawborough and three at Alverton. The hedges that remained (,the majority that were removed were Elder , dead Ash trees ,rabbit warrens and barbed wire) were kept trimmed back to the smallest size possible, having to be cut by hand.
Due to the heavy nature of the soil, winter crops including Oilseed rape, Wheat, and Beans have been the only arable crops for the last 30 years, with spring peas having been grown for the last 5. Minimal cultivations have been used since 1969 except for a period of 3 years at the beginning of the 1980’s, the beginning of the straw burning ban, when we reverted to ploughing.
In 1954 Charles Guy Hawthorne moved to Flawborough to become the farm manager for his god father at Flawborough Hall. Two years later after the majors death Charles inherited the farm and therefore is the first generation of Hawthorne's to farm at Flawborough.