Bird courses at Milden Hall

Spring 2020

These bird ID course are aimed at relative beginners with an expectation that course participants will gain confidence to enhance their birdwatching skills. With the focus on garden and woodland birds along with waterfowl and waders, discover why Suffolk is one of the UK's best areas for winter birdwatching. Expect a combination of indoor sessions covering the basics of bird identification and outdoor sessions to practice in the field.


Yellowhammer by Kev Chapman / CC-BY-2

inc birdsong

April 22-24 (Wed-Fri)

2 nights full board

inc birdsong

HALF DAY with lunch
April 22 (Wed)
8:30am - 2:30pm


  • An overview of the birds you can expect to see in the UK in winter, and the habitats in which to look for them.
  • Examine the merits of good field-craft to enhance birdwatching opportunities including preparation, your behavior and the birds’ behavior.
  • Identification pointers for a range of common winter birds, by both sight and sound around the farm and in nearby woodland. 


  • Specific guidance on how to distinguish between similar-looking winter waders and waterfowl
  • An introduction to bird surveys that course members would be able to participate post course

Milden Hall

Milden Hall, nr Lavenham, is a working farm with ancient wildflower meadows, hedged countryside, woodland and ponds.  Hedges are still coppiced, ponds are maintained, and we still cut the meadow for hay - using scythes in places!  Buzzards mew, yellowhammer belt out song from hedges, heron and sometimes tufted duck frequent the lake and ponds. 

Milden Hall has been the Hawkins family home for 205 years and is definitely not a holiday ‘complex’. We aim to provide really attractive and comfortable farmstay accommodation, which promotes the environmental benefits of sensitively farmed Suffolk countryside and the real value of good local produce, provided with minimum adverse impact to the environment - and a positive message for guests to take away with them. In 2002 we won the first Gold Award for Green Tourism in Suffolk.

You can find your own local accommodation or book full or half board at Milden Hall. We have a range of very different accommodation and allocation of accommodation will be subject to total numbers booking on a course. Firstly we have the huge, beautiful Georgian rooms and smaller Tudor rooms (shared bathrooms only) in the 16th century Milden Hall farmhouse with period furniture and spectacular views across Suffolk. Secondly the Old Brooder offers very modern, stylish bunkhouse accommodation (mix of bunks and conventional beds but all super-comfy) with lots of bathrooms. And lastly, there are three private rooms in the quirky, atmospheric Tudor barn. Double/larger rooms will be allocated to couples as a priority.

All food is home-made, locally sourced and seasonal where possible from the farm (game, lamb, pork) our large veggie patch or three local farm shops.

Breakfasts will include local eggs, our low food mile sausages and bacon, fruit compote and organic yoghurt. You will have a chance to select your choice of lunch and supper - home-made lasagne, venison stew, pheasant pie, lamb moussaka and vegetarian quiches and curries.

Bring your own tipple!

Booking and Confirmation

When you wish to confirm your place, we will hold your place for 24 hours whilst you either send a 50% non-refundable booking deposit cheque payment or do a bank transfer and return the completed booking form. On receipt of payment and booking form, we will send you an e-acknowledgement and lots of useful information about your stay or day at Milden Hall. The balance of the fee is due one month before the event.

Milden Hall in winter
Milden Hall with wild flowers
Double room
Milden fresh veg
Veg plot
Steve Piotrowski
Your tutor, Steve Piotrowski

Dates & Prices

Residential 2 nights
Full Board
£250 per person

March 6-8 (Fri to Sun)

April 22-24 (Wed to Fri)

Enquire direct for
non-residential options

A half-dayer with lunch:
£55 per person

April 22 (Wednesday)

To book please phone or email Juliet Hawkins at Milden Hall

01787 247235

For further information on Milden Hall, visit the website at;