Happisburgh Owls & Happisburgh Lighthouse

Today on the way home from Sea Palling beach, we took the coast road up to Cromer and stopped by the beautiful Happisburgh Lighthouse (pronounced: Haze Brah).  As we’ve been there in mid-winter on our way back from seeing the seals at Horsey Mere, it was nice to see it on a warmer, beautiful spring day.  You can read all about the history and parts of the area literally crumbling into the sea due to coastal erosion.  Perhaps in 100 years, this too will be at the bottom of the ocean.


While pretty at times, those yellow flowers are actually oil seed rape for rapeseed oil.  Apparently they are heavily sprayed so at times, they do not smell so nice, but today they were fine.  In fact, one place you’ll read it’s a great alternative to olive oil and the rage with chefs.  Then another day, you’ll read it’s full of toxins and when it is altered to become Canola oil = GMOS, etc.   Some people and animals have major allergies to it, like this poor horse who now has equine asthma and has to be treated with a nebulizer twice a day!

Heading down the small road, Lighthouse Lane, to take a photo from the backside, as we did back in the winter, we noticed a sign that read: “Visit the owls.”  As we’re huge fans of owls, we thought we’d check it out and glad we did.


Turns out it is a couple from the Lighthouse Farm.  The wife, Sandra, took a liking to owls 13 years ago and now has them as a hobby in their working farm & barn. She hand rears them from 3 days old and there were six varieties there today – including the Snowy White, Barn Owl and even one from Sri Lanka. They really looked fake – like taxidermy.    The attraction is called the Owl Barn. There is £2 donation for adults and kids are free and a £1 handling charge but you are able to take as many photos as you’d like.

While we really love barn owls, this first one – like a tawney owl, was just sooo cute!





Maebh didn’t want to actually hold them, but she did pat two of them and was so proud.



Soren on the other hand, held THREE different ones!  One even opened its wings and was nearly upside down, but Soren just held strong and did great.  One was so heavy, he told her that he wanted to stop now, as he couldn’t hold his arm up any longer.







In addition, she was kind enough to take our family on a private tour of her farm to view all the other animals too.  I joked and said it was like “BIG BARN FARM – the adventures of Petal, Gobo, Digger & Dash! In addition to the cool owls, they have rare breed poultry, goats, four horses and three enormous pigs!  She got the pigs with the plan to slaughter them, but fell in love and 6 years later, they are just huge friendly pigs.




Maurice is the gray one!

Another cool thing is that does is travel to schools and spends about 4 hours there, talking about the owls, letting each child hold the owls, take photos, etc.  There is a £50 fee for transport & time, but I’m going to be discussing this with the head of Soren’s school, as this could be really fun too!!

When we are in that area again, we’ll pop back in for sure!

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