FARMING MATTERS: Bustling community thrives on the farm
A farm can be like a mini community with lots of different people living and working together. It's not like farms of old of course, where there were dozens of farmhands, and one of the duties of the farmer's wife was to feed them all at lunchtime each day.
But modern farms are still bustling affairs. Tractors and other machinery may have replaced a lot of the labour intensive work, but that doesn’t mean there is a lack of people. Many farmhouses, farmyards and workers’ cottages have been sold off over the years to private buyers, but they are still located within a working farm, and so these people become part of a new community, possibly sharing driveways and lanes.
Other farms have converted their buildings to units, and so independent self employed people travel to these farms each day to run their businesses alongside the farmer.
And of course there is a proliferation of farm shops, which bring many members of the public onto farms on a daily basis.
So farms continue to thrive with human contact, but simply in different ways from the past.
Contractors who work on many farms, using large machinery that many farmers can’t justify buying for seasonal work, visit to bring in the harvest, plough and make silage.
There are lots of visits from advisors connected to the industry, to talk about the crops and the animals.
And on our farm we also have people who come in for recreation, to pursue their own hobbies.
These include bee keepers who have three hives in the woods, several men who shoot, and a metal detectorist who has been coming to us for years.
He has found a few interesting items - although nothing that would be considered to be treasure trove!
We know all the people who live, work or pursue hobbies here and enjoy the real feeling of community that is engendered by sharing and enjoying the same space.