TripAdvisor Award Winner 2020 & 2021
Reviews from millions of Tripadvisor travellers place this Attraction in the top 10% worldwide
Our sheepdog experience day is undoubtedly the finest anywhere in the country. Working with sheepdogs is not a hobby but a way of life. You will spend the day with an International handler, trainer and published author Nij Vyas and his winning team of dogs in the most picturesque and sublime locations. You will be taken on a memorable journey which will be hands-on, educational, fun, rewarding, emotive and informative.
Each experience day will be unique and personal for family groups and couples. Individuals voucher holders will be combined where appropriate.
This experience is very true to life, working, often, with a large commercial flock, not just training sheep that can be robotic. This can lead to some very exciting and spontaneous moments.
|Spend the day with Nij Vyas and Experience the magic of his trial winning dogs||Work our Border Collies with expert guidance and learn how to guide sheep||The traditional of shepherding with a Border Collie and the Psychology behind the training||Set at Launde Abbey in the Historic County of Rutland amidst rolling and scenic countryside|
“A Wonderful Experience”
“We had an absolutely brilliant day with this interesting, very skilled and charming man. He is obviously a master of his trade. His dogs are wonderfully well trained and their abilities surpassed all of our expectations”
Frequently Asked Questions
Location and Meeting Arrangements
Launde Abbey is located in Leicestershire, England, 14 miles east of the city of Leicester and six miles south-west of Oakham, Rutland.
Address: East Norton LE7 9XB
Phone: 01572 717254
Clients should park to the right of the Abbey, on the grass, where I will meet them.
In the event that you are late please call the Abbey or me to advise of your delay or to get directions. In the event that I am not present please come to the reception or cafe and ask a member staff. I will always endeavour to communicate with them and inform them of my whereabouts. After a reasonable time, normally 30 minutes, the experience will commence without you, should other participants have arrived promptly.
Payment in full is required with the booking form.
Single Adult (part of a small group of 2-3 people) – £104 each
Single Client Private Exclusive One-One – £156
Two Adults £182 – Not exclusive
Two Adults Exclusive with no other parties £250 – For additional numbers please email me and I will invoice you.
Three Adults £260 part of a group. For an exclusive day please email me and I will invoice you.
Four Adults £420
Five Adults £505
Family Option: 1 – 2 adults plus up to 2 children under 8 years – £260
Family Option: 2 – 2 adults plus one child between 8-16years – £275
Family Option: 3 – 2 adults plus two children between 8-16 years – £300
Family Option: 4 – 1 adult plus up to two children U8yrs – Personal experience ie. no third parties – £166
Family Option: 5 – 1 adult plus two children over 8 yrs – £196
ALL CLIENTS BOOKING AN EXPERIENCE DAY PLEASE COMPLETE THE BOOKING FORM HERE
Additional Bookings after the original booking date – For each additional adult, the cost will be £85 pp and for each child, over the age of 8 years, a fee of £25 per child will apply. For children under 8 a fee of £5 per child will apply.
Please request a voucher should you require one at the time of paying. Vouchers are valid for 6 months only but if if purchasing one during November then the 6 months will commence on the 1st January. If your voucher expires you can purchase an additional 6 months for £20pp. If you wish to extend your voucher at the time of making a payment this will cost an additional £20. Please email us for an invoice as there is no link to this payment.
Experience Some of UK’s finest Border Collies
Experience the Border Collie
Our experience day is undoubtedly the finest anywhere in the country. Working with sheepdogs is not a hobby but a way of life. You will spend the day with an International handler, trainer and published author Nij Vyas and his winning team of dogs in the most picturesque and sublime locations. You will be taken on a memorable journey which will be hands-on, educational, fun, rewarding, emotive and informative.
Each experience day will be unique and personal for family groups and couples. Individuals voucher holders will be combined where appropriate with one maybe two people maximum.
Duration – Approx 4.5 hours – 10:00 am – 2:30pm
Voucher valid for 5 months
Duration – Approx 4.5 hours – 10:00 am – 2:30pm – Lunch will be approximately one hour.
Vouchers are valid for 5 months
What to Expect
Stunning views and beautiful countryside. To be educated about the traditional art of shepherding with a Border Collie. Experience the thrill of working with livestock at close hand. Work both fully trained and young dogs. Discover the power of silence, confidence and calmness. To be able to multi-task whilst being mobile – Men will find this easy! To understand how three species, each with a mistrust of one another can come together and work in harmony. To be thrilled, surprised, exercised, excited and exhilarated, with plenty of laughter! To understand Nij’s approach to “intelligent sheepdog training” and the wider implications of this. Quality locally sourced food is also available. If you are really lucky the Red Kites may also pay us a visit. When possible photographs will be taken to record your day and emailed to you, (photos may be reproduced on our websites), if you do not want photos taken please advise of this in advance.
Is this suitable for me
Our experience days are suitable for both individuals, couples or groups (5-8 maximum). We also cater for specialist groups such as dog training clubs, rescue societies and businesses. Whether you are a lover of the Border collie, the British countryside or wish to engage in team building we can cater for all your needs. Our experience days have proved to be popular not only for visitors from the UK but worldwide with people coming from as far as South Africa, Brazil, Australia, Hong Kong, Spain and America. Children under 10’s are welcome but restrictions may apply on participation. *Please note spectators will be classed as participants therefore costs will apply.
We try to minimise on walking however to participate, a good level of fitness is required. If you have mobility problems we will attempt to tailor the experience for you but it is best to discuss any special arrangements with us.
Do I have to participate
It is not a requirement that anyone has to participate in working with a dog, however, most people usually have the option to do so and this can provide a lot of fun for all participants. Some aspects of participation require physical fitness whilst others simply require quick voice commands.
Children, depending on age and maturity may or may not want to participate. Equally elderly clients or those with injuries may not be able to work a dog. We try to be as flexible as we can.
The welfare of the dogs and sheep is paramount at all times.
If you have any concerns regarding Covid please telephone us. The following points are just advisory and not mandatory. Prior to your attendance clients should:
1 Ensure they have tested using Lateral Flo or PCR tests at least two days before the arranged date.
2 Maintain a two metre distance where possible.
3 Travel separately, unless they are in a family bubble.
4 Cafe – Restaurant – Please sit with your own family members.
5 Ensure masks are worn when inside, other than during mealtimes or having a drink.
6 Pre-warn the organisers about any cold or flu like symptoms or indeed if they have been “pinged” by the NHS or similar Apps requesting self isolation or a PCR test.
7 If you would prefer to have lunch/drinks within your bubble please request this prior to the arranged date.
All participants have to have booked and paid in advance and spectators are not permitted. If however your partner or family member wishes to join us for lunch this is permissible, as long as we are informed in advance, so a place can be reserved.
Clients are reminded to bring suitable outdoor clothing which is waterproof and layering is also advisable. It is better to bring too many clothes than not enough. Hats and gloves are also advisable, particularly in the winter.
On the whole, a farmer has to shepherd in all weathers and as such, the experience days will go ahead, unless there are weather warnings. Please always ring to confirm if in doubt, as emails can be unreliable. Generally, late cancellations within two weeks of the agreed date are not refundable. All cases, however, will be considered on merit.
Is easily accessible by all major roads and rail networks. It offers comfortable en-suite accommodation and hospitality that is second to none. Each of the bedrooms has been beautifully furnished and has either an en-suite shower or bathroom and there are plenty of places around the Abbey for guests to sit and enjoy the peace and tranquility of Launde Abbey with the lovely landscaped gardens. For the enjoyment of all guests there is a coffee area and dining room, a licensed bar, as well as a small shop selling snacks, sweets and biscuits.
Rutland and Surrounding Areas
Rutland is the smallest historic English county offering something for everyone. The market town of Oakham and Stamford and Rockingham are a short drive away offering many quaint shops and cafe’s, whilst Rutland Water, a large artificial reservoir is popular for watersports and cyclists, with walkers and bird watchers as it is an open nature reserve for wildfowl and a breeding site for ospreys. The reservoir is also the best location for seeing red kites which were introduced to the area a few years ago. Rockingham castle, home of the Saunders Watson family who have lived in the Castle for 450 years, sits on an escarpment overlooking the Welland Valley and countryside beyond. Surrounding the Castle are magnificent gardens and grounds providing a haven of peace and quiet.
Weekend Breaks & BB
If you wish to extend your weekend and stay over we can provide you with details of suitable Bed and Breakfasts in the area.
Lunch is booked at Launde Abbey for approximately 12:15 pm. There is a good selection of quality snack meals and sandwiches, with a generous selection of homemade cakes. It is not necessary to bring a packed lunch. All tastes are catered for and the staff are very accommodating. Lunch is not included in the price.
What a great experience – beautiful location (despite the weather!) and a privilege to see Nij in action with his amazing dogs. Very mindful and engaging and a brief glimpse into the depth of knowledge and experience that Nij has gained and uses with his dogs.”
I was privileged to spend the day yesterday with Nij and his wonderful dogs. Goodness these dogs take it to another level. It was an amazing experience to see how these dogs handled the flocks. The venue is beautiful and the facilities in the abbey excellent. A wonderful experience and makes one appreciate the skills and dedication of those who compete in sheepdog trials.”
Working with Schools and Colleges
Working with young farmers and school children is an essential part of our work. Young farmers our our future and working with sheepdogs, undoubtably, provides the most economical and efficient way of working with livestock. Sheep can be very labour intensive and the use of a well trained Border Collie will without doubt free up a vast amount of time enabling farmers of all ages to maintain a healthier work -life balance.
We offer visits from schools and colleges at Launde Abbey or visit you in order to give talks and demonstrations. Some of our sessions are hands on and participants can experience working with one of our well trained dogs.
National Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs
If you are a Young Farmers group leader and wish to us to give a talk and demonstration we would only be too happy to oblige.
Please email us for further details so we can tailor your experience.