One of the young men who attends the Agriculture Project here at Crag House Farm got quite a surprise a couple of months ago, when helping to shift rubble to clear a small area of land. Something which he spotted in with mounds of earth and stones, turned out to be something really special; an almost entire clay pipe. Pipe bowls or stems have sometimes been discovered on the Farm, particularly when ploughing land or repairing drystone walls, but never one in as good a condition as this.
Having sought advice on cleaning the pipe, (being grateful to have a trustee who was formerly a museum curator), the pipe was carefully handed over to our very own “Repair Shop”, otherwise known as the Art Shop Project here at Caring For Life. They did a wonderful, delicate job of restoring it and the clay pipe now looks magnificent, showing something of the markings of use around the bowl, and clearly showing the spur underneath.
Although we cannot be clear as to the exact age of the clay pipe, it is thrilling to be able to see something which was once used by someone working here at Crag House Farm. It appears to have been a good quality pipe, and someone must have been sorry to realise they had lost it!
With all the history attached to Crag House Farm, it is unsurprising that we find objects such as this beautiful pipe, occasionally coins, old field drains and even a quern-stone.
Farming activities have taken place here for centuries, and it is rather wonderful to see how a little piece of history was unearthed by a young man now working on the Agriculture Project here at Caring For Life. Crag House Farm is providing a safe haven and a sense of belonging for so many people, and we thank God for this.