We have one week of making Gorwydd Caerphilly in the new dairy under our belt! And we love it!
The dairy works really well, great flow and some really great special extras like the gravity feed pipe. It was worth all the hard work getting that bulk tank up on a frame!
There is still lots to do but sitting outside after work, with their backs against the make room wall, having a cider and watching the cows, Todd and Maugan took a minute to enjoy their new dairy.
Old Neals Yard Dairy tip for firing up the new dairy: charging the room with bacteria from Gorwydd Farm whey and also, here’s our bulk tank full of 3000 litres of milk ready for our first cheese make – tomorrow morning!!!
What a week!
The children have broken up from school for the summer.
Several journeys have been made from Gorwydd to North Somerset, firstly with clean cheese boards and cheese presses, then with all the racks and then most importantly, with Maugan, Kim and Rufus – now officially residents of the West Country.
Seeing the storerooms empty at Gorwydd and also seeing the cheese presses at the new dairy have been among the most startling images of the project for me.
The cheese will be the next thing to make the journey but first Todd had to spend several 14 hour days making the dairy cheese-ready.
We have reached a turning point in the project, with Maugan now on site, together with a couple of key members of staff. These next two weeks before we start making will fly past but they’ll be hectic and the level of detail of things to sort out is mind boggling.
This last image is cheese racks lining up at Gorwydd waiting to be transported to Somerset
Our milk won’t have to travel more than 100 yards from cow to cheese vat and it will be making that journey very slowly and gently.
Yesterday, with the help of an amazing team from Barvick Engineering, we spent a terrifying few hours lifting a 1 tonne bulk tank on to a frame so that the milk can be gravity fed from there to the cheese vat – with minimum upset to the molecules.
Today was an amazing day – and we worked with the most skilful brilliant people. Alan Hayes from Capital Refrigeration choreographed the day beautifully. The two Gregs from specialist lifting company Wheelers Transport made the impossible possible by fitting very large heavy equipment through very small spaces with enormous heavy duty machinery. Their team work was phenomenal.
More pictures to follow. What a relief. The big kit is in place.
Todd and Maugan – hearts in mouths
Todd and his new best friend – two tonnes of stainless.
How can that possibly fit through that door?
Two and a Half Tonne Fulton Steam Boiler
Alan Hayes bringing it all together with the tele handler and a 2 tonne cheese vat
Relief! The base of the vat is in. Just waiting for the gantry.
Wheelers Specialist Lifting Company performing a bit of magic with a terrifyingly large tele handler in a worryingly small space
The sixth of May had long been in the calendar as A Very Important Day – the day we took over the shell of the building that had been constructed at Puxton Court Farm, and began to transform it into our very own dairy. This is how the building looked last Tuesday, 6th May:
The space looks huge!
That very same day, wall and ceiling panels arrived on site.
The first delivery of cold room panels is offloaded on site
When we visited the building yesterday morning, the place had been transformed. There were internal walls and ceilings, corridors and doorways.
Doorways leading to spacious store rooms
In just two more days, all the internal partitions will have been installed. To see the drawings come to life is incredibly exciting… a little bit too exciting are words that have left Todd’s mouth on more than one occasion!
The make room is taking shape
A large, high-ceilinged make room will sit alongside three maturation rooms large enough to house hundreds of rounds of cheese as it ripens and matures into delicious Gorwydd Caerphilly. We can’t wait to start filling this brand new building with our 150 year old cheese presses, old wooden cheese stands, and most importantly, the beautiful 4.5 metre long stainless steel Dutch cheese vat.
Even the cows, recently let out to graze in the pastures surrounding the dairy, couldn’t hide their curiosity!
Curious cows looking on from their field, adjacent to the new dairy