Welcome to my farming blog. My name is Marie, agricultural product developer at Symondsbury Estate. I am new to this and new to the Estate. So I feel I should introduce myself and the farm at Symondsbury.
I have grown up on our family farm and stables in the West Country – learning to ride a horse before being able to walk. Being covered in mud and bottle-feeding lambs was one of my first memories. This love for animals and the outdoors has stayed with me. I continued this love for the outdoors by gaining a business degree from Hartpury Agricultural College, beforemoving to a job on a thoroughbred stud breeding and caring for racehorses.
Little did I know that this job would turn into more of an agricultural role, looking after a commercial flock of 150 sheep, Tamworth pigs and Dexter cows. Most days seemed to involve chasing the escaped pigs around fields! Finding a new love for livestock, I began milking goats. 1000 to be precise, twice daily, and before you ask not by hand! Working with goats was a pleasure; they are very caring, naughty but loveable. Needless to say I learnt a lot!
This brings me to now. I am very excited to have started working for Symondsbury Estate as their agricultural product developer. I am hoping to bring in new ideas which will lead onto more of their own products to sell from the shop and cafe! Lovely estate grown, fresh produce straight from the farm to your plate. That is the aim. Symondsbury currently farms around 1500 acres, most of which is arable land, growing mainly wheat, oats and barley which are then sold for human and animal feed. There are currently 30 cows which graze the fields in summer and are tucked up in the barn all winter. You can often see sheep grazing on Colmer’s Hill; these are from a nearby farmer who rents the grazing from the estate.
Watch this space for the exciting developments that will be happening on the farm at Symondsbury in the coming months!