Merrist Wood College with their certificates of achievement and new Smallholders book

Chicken Keeping Course Dates

Chicken expert Suzie Baldwin will be running her highly rated Chicken Keeping Courses on the following Sundays:

  • March 13th
  • April 3rd
  • April 17th
  • May 1st

Beginners chicken courses take place from 10:00–12:30 at our smallholding on the Surrey / Hampshire border. The cost of the course is £40 and includes sandwiches (egg – would you believe!), cake and tea/coffee or juice. Please contact us for more details and further information and to book your place.  Places may be limited so that we can provide a more personal course for you or we can run it for your family group.

“Fantastic course at Hollywater hens today. Suzie Baldwin is hugely knowledgeable and a real confidence giver. Can’t wait to get my girls.”Helen Ellis via our Facebook page

The Hollywater Hens’ Beginners Chicken Course includes:

  • Setting up
  • Chicken breeds
  • Feeding chickens
  • Handling chickens
  • Common chicken health problems
  • How to handle your hens
  • Wing clipping
  • Questions and answer session with fresh sandwiches, cake and tea or coffee.

“A fantastic few hours learning from the Jedi Chicken Master herself Suzie Baldwin. We decided to take the course before we move to France in April and do this all by ourselves. Suzie couldn’t have been more helpful if she tried!! Fantastic course, great lady, great setup highly recommended to all!!!” – Andy MacPherson via our Facebook page

The beginners chicken course is a great way to gain confidence and knowledge enabling you to provide your hens with a happy healthy lifestyle.

Also they are a great way to meet like minded people.
Old clothes and wellington boots are advisable as this is a fun, hands-on practical course.


Telephone or email for more details and to book your place:

telephone contact details for Hollywater Hens  01428 751749

email contact details for Hollywater Hens


White Hen pecking at grass

Expanded Chicken Breed pages

We are working on providing more information on various chicken breeds and have added some more chicken breed pages on the following birds:

You can click on the links above or on the Breeds page or find these pages in "About Hens" > "Breeds" in the menu at the top of every page.


Please note that Suzie Baldwin is the chicken expert and any errors in the compiled breed information are down to the website developer rather than Suzie who will be along shortly to make any changes and corrections. All image attributions are given on the individual breed page rather than the above thumbnails.

Suzie Baldwin writes in BBC Countryfile magazine

Suzie Baldwin Talks Turkey in BBC Countryfile Magazine

Talking Turkey

Look out for the December issue of BBC Countryfile magazine where Hollywater Hens’ poultry expert Suzie Baldwin contributes to an article all about turkeys.

Suzie Baldwin writes in BBC Countryfile magazine

“Why are turkeys called turkeys?”

The firs time Europeans saw turkeys – in North America – they believed the birds must be related to guinea fowl. As guinea fowl were thought to originate in Turkey, their larger American ‘cousins’ were given that name.

Poultry expert Suzie Baldwin writes in BBC Countryfile magazine

Poultry expert Suzie Baldwin writes in BBC Countryfile magazine








The article “Turkey: A Natural History” tells you everything you never knew about the Christmas bird.


Winter opening times at Hollywater Hens

With Winter closing in now, Hollywater Hens will be moving to our Winter opening hours after this weekend.
We will remain open at weekends from 10am to 4pm but will be closed on weekdays apart from Friday (by appointment only please)
Monday to Thursday – Closed
Friday – by appointment
Saturday and Sunday – 10am to 4pm
lambs in front of the Hollywater Hens shop

Open again as usual

The family wedding is over and Hollywater Hens is open again as usual:


Chickens for sale in the shop at Hollywater Hens in Hampshire

Open Wednesday to Friday
9:00 am – 5:00 pm

Open Saturday and Sunday
10:00am – 4:00pm

Closed – Monday and Tuesday
Open – Bank holidays

Chicken Sculpture at The Savill Garden

Sculpture in The Savill Garden – including a very nice hen

Chicken Sculpture at The Savill Garden


Visitors to The Savill Garden in Windsor Great Park will be able to explore and enjoy a display of imaginative and innovative sculpture, forming an exciting trail which leads around the Garden. The sculptures are inspired by the natural world. All pieces are available to purchase and standard Savill Garden entry fees apply.

Chicken Sculpture




While being very careful to blur the price off this sculpture - it was quite expensive! - another visitor to the Sculpture Trail did say with all sincerity "She's being very still for you to take your picture".

water feature

pig sculpture






sculpture and flowers

ducks crossing road

Ducklings cross road… with police escort

Police in the city of Christchurch, New Zealand, stopped traffic to help a mother duck and several ducklings cross a busy road.

Canterbury Police posted a video of the incident on their facebook page, along with a note thanking the motorists who stopped to allow them safe passage.

“Thank you to everyone who stopped while this family of ducklings flagged down a Police escort across a busy Christchurch intersection. They went on to explore a newly formed water feature!!!”