British Farming

An introduction to British Farming

An introduction to British Farming

When you’re new – there’s only one thing you’ll be suggested to bring when visiting for the first time, and that’s old clothes. Now, you wont need those through the screen, but I can think of a few bits you may want to know to get ourselves acquainted.

An introduction to British Farming
An introduction to British Farming
All Photography © Chloe Hardwick 2019

Oh my goodness.

This all started back in 2018, when me (Rufus) and my friends Josh decided we should film my mum on the farm.

Living in London, it was amazing how few people close to us really understood or cared to know about British Farming. It wasn’t a glamorous topic, it wasn’t a particularly discoverable topic – and it certainly felt very closed for people. I became a source of knowledge, the ‘farmer’ within friendship circles. Which is pretty laughable to anyone who’s actually as farmer.

Which is the premise of the show – here’s the little intro video that we created.

Sometimes you don’t have to be the biggest or the best to tell a great story – you just have to see the beauty in what you have.

Rufus + Josh on What’s the Point? Epsisode.

I would spend some time away from the city each month, to delve into a topic I’ve never fully immersed into – I mean – I’ve been around farming for my whole life. But I’ve never spent time helping out voluntarily.

So aimed with my super duper talented film friends Josh and James; all the cameras and equipment @ FLANK; and as many old clothes as I could fit on. We got started in January of that year, and set out to show the farm over the course of the following 12 months.

There wasn’t much of an agenda, just an ambition to introduce more people to the industry – who didn’t know much about it.

The farm itself is set between Oxford and Milton Keynes, and is made up of around 150 acres of permanent pasture.

Not the biggest farm, or the prettiest.

What’s been so successful about the series, is the setting itself. The farm isn’t anything special – there are 000’s like it dotted around the countryside here in the UK. We’re blessed for that!

What’s amazing though, is how special it’s always been to mum and to me – and how special it’s become to our people around the world.

Just the beginning

So at the end of 2018, we didn’t want to stop making the videos – and our audience didn’t want us to either.

We decided to keep going, and we haven’t stopped since.

Going into 2020 we wanted to set ourselves some targets for making more content, and taking the project further than we’ve been able to before.

We need your help to keep going, and we’re asking everyone who’s interested in what our plans are – to subscribe to our newsletter, so we can send further information on what’s in store going forward.

Rufus Denne. Happiest when busiest. Grew up on a farm in the countryside, and now growing a business in the big city. I love design, tech and marketing. Questions? Suggestions? DM FLANK

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2 thoughts on “An introduction to British Farming

  1. I live in New Hampshire, USA and I am new to farming at 47 years young. My husband turned me onto your show. I absolutely adore your Mum. She is my hero. I think of her when I am moving livestock,, lugging fences, and other jobs I never thought I would have the guts to do in my life! Thank you all for the inspiration!!!!

  2. Again an absolute delight and great to receive during our total lockdown! Brilliant, brilliant and more brilliant!

    Each and every video takes me back to my childhood days (although much less mechanised then) from when my Dad farmed as a tenant farmer from 1940 just outside Wokingham in Berkshire (Ashridge Farm) and then when I was 9 he moved in 1953 back to his home County of Gloucestershire (he was born in Winchcombe) to Great Washbourne (Manor Farm).

    During every school holiday I worked alongside the other Farm Labourers from the age of 9 and then had to leave boarding school in Wales when I was 16 to run the farm because my Dad had broken both his legs and it was the beginning of the harvest season.

    From the Ex-Army & Navy Stores I bought from my weekly wages of GBP5.00 (GBP2.50 to my Mother for Board and Lodging) the tools and equipment to allow me to build up a farm workshop where I did most of the farm equipment maintenance and built 2 wheel 10 ton hydraulic tipping trailers, 4 wheel farm trailers, bale collection sledges and other repair work for neighbouring farmers. This was done after my farm work (in the evenings) to earn more money.

    My Dad had David Brown tractors when I was a Kid but changed to Nuffield’s of which he had four. When I was working for him I found them next to useless and spent years trying to get him to change.

    Eventually I managed to persuade him to change to Ford and he bought a Ford 5000 which easily did the work of two of the Nuffield’s – thank goodness for that otherwise I would have been given ‘hard labour’!”

    In late 1967 I came to South Africa and February 1968 I joined Alfa Laval (now DeLaval) as a general dogs-body and worked my way up to have my own DeLaval Dealership in 1981 working all hours at the beck and call of the Farmers.

    I’m tuning in from Howick in KwaZulu Natal Province in South Africa and since coming to SA in 1968 I have worked all over the country for DeLaval until I retired 10 years ago!

    That Dear Lady Sarah (and Rufus!) need a Medal – she works so hard and is so knowledgeable!

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