A very Happy New Year to all!


I hope you were able to enjoy your Christmas break and are looking forward to an exciting 2018.

As I write, we are still yet to take down our Christmas decorations and lights. It’s always so sad when they are finally packed away – especially given the current weather!

It’s true to say that many homes now have sparkly LED lights in one form or another all year round and I suspect that some of us will try to convince ourselves that some of the Christmas lights might be allowed to stay up!

Christmas Day itself proved too much for Toby, but he kept his red ribbon in place all day.

Turning to outside, it’s pouring at the moment, but to be fair we haven’t had severe weather in my part of Surrey so far. We’ve had a few cold blustery days, some frost and even a smattering of snow just before Christmas that didn’t last more than an hour.

I know that’s not a reflection of the weather across the UK, as many of you would have had far worse and I always say that our coldest months come after Christmas. My brother Darren had a huge amount of snow before Christmas in Radnorshire, Wales and it truly looked like Narnia!

This time of year can also be tough on our resident wildlife, particularly those that have to tough out the winter here in the UK. There are many things we can do to help our wonderful British wildlife and we’ll be exploring some of these options in a new show I’m presenting on Saturday 6th January at 2pm called The Wildlife Friendly Garden and forming part of our Home and Garden event.

The Today’s Special Value of the day will be Richard Jackson’s Premium High Energy Bird Food. This year my pal Richard says the generous 14kg sack is even better! He has added extra suet pellets, which British garden birds love. I used his bird food straight after last Christmas and our garden birds loved it – I even took a video of some of the many visitors we had, who had managed to discover the food in just two days!

I also took this photo of a nuthatch feeding on Richard’s premium bird food and he remained a constant visitor. It’s wonderful to see how quickly word seems to get around the avian world and it’s always a treat to see new species visiting your garden.

At the end of this month (27 – 29th I believe), the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds are conducting the Big Garden Birdwatch. You can get involved with many others in the UK to get a better understanding of the variety and number of bird species visiting your garden. More details are available on the RSPB website.

Well until next time stay well fed and “twitching”!

Dale x


  1. Josephine Jennings January 3, 2018 at 7:22 pm -  Reply

    Happy New Year Dale. Looking forward towards the tsv.

    • Dale Franklin January 10, 2018 at 9:02 pm -  Reply

      Thank you Josephine – Happy New Year to you too x

  2. Jules Cooke January 6, 2018 at 4:39 pm -  Reply

    I’ve enjoyed watching all the wonderful items on today for our fabulous feathered friends. Thanks for all the great information and advice about how we can help wildlife, especially in these cold winter months.

    What a cute picture of Toby 🙂

    • Dale Franklin January 10, 2018 at 9:03 pm -  Reply

      Glad you enjoyed it Jules x

  3. martin forbes January 24, 2018 at 6:27 pm -  Reply

    Happy new year dale to you and your family hope you had agood xmas and new year i had a quiet xma sand new year hope you got my xmas card i did not get one back from you happy new year in 2018.

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