Author Topic: First Row With a Farmer  (Read 1310 times)

Lee in Doncaster

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First Row With a Farmer
« on: 18:18:40, 19/11/17 »
Today's walk:


http://peakwalking.blogspot.co.uk/2017/11/moscar-low-bradfield-holdworth-and.html


I struggled to keep a straight face after what he did.
Walking every week in the Peak District...or somewhere else   http://peakwalking.blogspot.com

glovepuppet

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Re: First Row With a Farmer
« Reply #1 on: 20:19:33, 19/11/17 »
It never ceases to amaze me how ridiculous and contradictory farmers can be. Totally unreasonable, and no logic to their grumbling, which only serves to make themselves look stupid. Why would you make yourself look daft?  :D

pleb

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Re: First Row With a Farmer
« Reply #2 on: 10:37:43, 20/11/17 »
Oh wow. I must be lucky, never had cross words with a farmer yet :o

pauldawes

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Re: First Row With a Farmer
« Reply #3 on: 14:20:04, 20/11/17 »
Oh wow. I must be lucky, never had cross words with a farmer yet :o


It's unusual to have cross words with them. But not unicorn territory. Keep walking through farm yards and you'll break your duck.


My worst one was when I was walking through a farmyard...bang on public right away. A large rottweiler on a chain about ten foot away, giving one or two "subtle" clues that it didn't like my presence.


I'm thinking "Thank the Lord, it's on a chain"...when it promptly broke chain..and heeded towards me, rapidly. Before I can say "oh dear", I feel a sharp pain at top of leg. My first thought was that it's bit me, and I'm in for a tough few minutes.


It hadn't..it had just head butted my leg. It then retreated about 3 foot away...snarling, glaring me...and in general not filling me with any confidence it wasn't going to attack again.


I shouted loudly for farmer..who (fortunately) came quickly and re-chained it.


When I complained about security of chain and the headbut...he told me I was lying! Apparently it was as gentle as a lamb, and never barked at anybody before..and no way had it head butted me. I told that I agreed one of us was a liar, and we both knew which one it was.

jimbob

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Re: First Row With a Farmer
« Reply #4 on: 17:06:39, 20/11/17 »
I agree with Pleb. I must also be lucky.

Given the number of walkers out there in the fields on a daily basis, and given the general thoughtlessness that belongs to all ( walkers & farmers) I am amazed there are not more confrontations.

Too little, too late, too bad......

clyoung

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Re: First Row With a Farmer
« Reply #5 on: 21:27:30, 20/11/17 »
That is very odd - I imagine it must have been tricky not to laugh.


The vast majority of people I've encountered, whether farmers or other walkers, seem perfectly nice. I have only had the one awkward encounter and like Paul's it involved angry dogs. The footpath went through a very narrow farm yard (confirmed by signs on the ground and the up to date OS Explorer Map) and aggressive dogs were chained up either side on long chains. It wasn't at all clear that there was a safe path between them all. The female farmer held one of them back while my teenage son and I passed through but then we came to a gate whose lock appeared to have been designed by Rubik. After failing miserably to open it, and sensing she had released the dog she was holding, I made the decision that it must actually be locked so we would climb over (at the hinge end of course). She then shouted at us that we would damage the gate, everyone had locks like that (I've never seen anything like it before or since) and furiously demonstrated what we should have done. We were still none the wiser and went on our way with her shouts ringing in our ears and adrenaline coursing through our veins. It was a real downer on what had otherwise been a lovely relaxing day.

barewirewalker

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Re: First Row With a Farmer
« Reply #6 on: 11:05:47, 21/11/17 »
It is an interesting confrontation, amusing but also informative. Here there is an individual with a short fuse, who has expressed his resentment as a professional occupier of the countryside to those, who wish to use the countryside for leisure purposes. How many more landowners do not really welcome the leisure visitor? Political correctness may well bottle up true feelings, if a right of way is not often used they see it as a liability, yet there is no motivation in the landowners mind to find out why that footpath may be underused.


Lostways can play a great part in adding continuity of way to the the access network, yet the landowner puts great stress on their irrelevance and this is based on a lack of study. A study of the old OS maps shows many clear examples, where public need overrides the occupancy of agricultural land in creating addition access to destinations to the road network. The landowners publications have continually stressed the point that the old ways to work now have to make way for leisure users. BUT the leisure industry is now one of the major cornerstones of national economy.


What this instance shows is just the underlying tip, of an embedded reluctance to share the countryside. Access does not occupy huge areas of land to the detriment of agricultural production, if the professional occupiers of our countryside were to offer hospitality that is proactive, they might start to realise that they have a very valuable public relations asset, and start to value it's indirect contribution to the rural economy. 


The trouble is the CLA have overplayed the demand for direct payment for access, some simple minded hill farmer might be excused in feeling that a walker should pay for a gate latch, that he would rather tie up with baler twine, so that when one of his heifers chews through, it he can blame a walker for leaving the gate open.
BWW
Their Land is in Our Country.

jimbob

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Re: First Row With a Farmer
« Reply #7 on: 11:34:52, 21/11/17 »
In over too many years I have never yet met a farmer who was "reluctant" to allow walkers to use the land  in a sensitive manner. I have met farmers who justifiably moan about rubbish and wanton damage from thoughtless people. I have even met farmers who have gone out of their way to show me a better view or a better way across the land that they make a living from.
I have also seen farmers angry about dog owners whose "kindly pets" have caused their ewes to abort or damaging their stock in other ways. Who wouldn't be angry in those circumstances. 

Never yet met any farmer who was anything other than similar tempered to the average person in an urban environment.
Too little, too late, too bad......

ninthace

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Re: First Row With a Farmer
« Reply #8 on: 12:20:09, 21/11/17 »
My experience with farmers is much the same as jimbob's.


I have had the odd fierce debate with "townies" who have bought a house in the country and did not like the idea of PROWs across their what they regard as their fiefdom and don't get me started on keepers.
Solvitur Ambulando

barewirewalker

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Re: First Row With a Farmer
« Reply #9 on: 10:50:03, 22/11/17 »
and don't get me started on keepers.


Keepers often reflect the real attitude of the landowner and the sort of gentry they serve. It is not a good idea to be confrontational or openly fly one's true colours, when standing on the oppositions turf. Having served 5 years on a council LAF I am convinced that the necessary improvements to access to all our countryside will not come willingly from those, who take their historical privileges for granted. Sadly this will chip away at the good image 'The British Farmer' has earned for himself, but this was earned by professional farmers, who were not owners of land.


The NFU was founded in the 1920's by the larger, professional tenant farmer, when landowners were attending Royal Ascot during the hay harvest or the deb season when most of the countries food was being gathered in. Policy backed up by propaganda initially emanated from the CLA, the NFU has stood back from involvement in access issues and sadly many true farmers, producers of food, are taking on the attitudes that come out of the CLA's Grosvenor Square office.
BWW
Their Land is in Our Country.

Peter

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Re: First Row With a Farmer
« Reply #10 on: 12:45:34, 22/11/17 »
A comment from a farmer's wife on a local Fb forum. She was complaining about walkers and them 'relieving themselves'.
She seemed to believe that we all walked along her land and used a particular wall to do no 2's...
She argued it was always happening.
Now, as walkers, we KNOW that a, this is not a common event. b, we do not have communal knowledge about where to go.


It does show her state of mind in actually believing that this was happening.
Peter
sometimes I fall off the learning curve....
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tonyk

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Re: First Row With a Farmer
« Reply #11 on: 22:58:11, 22/11/17 »
 Only had one run-in with a farmer and that was around thirty years ago.I was walking the Peak District High Level Route which was new at the time and this farmer was pretty upset that it crossed his field which until that time had been a little used right of way.He headed across the field on his tractor and then hurled a load of foul mouthed abuse at me and accused me of being a civil servant! What that had to do with it I don't know but I suppose that is an example of the way some farmer's minds work.I ignored him throughout,just stood there not saying anything but maintaining eye contact.After a while he ran out of steam and drove off.Typical bully who has probably been doing this all his life and when he dosen't get the reaction he expects  he dosen't know what to do.I should imagine the clown that the OP met was another bully who gets a kick out of intimidating people.

Andies

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Re: First Row With a Farmer
« Reply #12 on: 10:59:07, 23/11/17 »
Sadly I've had a few minor run-ins with farmers over the years. I suspect they are generally less access friendly down here (Suffolk) than in areas of the country where there are larger areas of access land?

Interesting to see comments about "farmers wives", as a couple of the least pleasant encounters I had involved them. One took great exception to our walking along a headland to avoid a narrow but busy road. I knew from her first words: "can I help you", that she wasn't happy! OK we shouldn't have been on the headland, notwithstanding the entire field was down to grass (setaside rather than for livestock). I explained we were just getting off the road and hoped we hadn't done any harm. I got various lectures about wild birds and dogs; I didn't have a dog with me ;D. The availability of permissive paths as detailed on Natural England's website that we could use; together with the general trespass talk....... ::)

This was all well over the top but we went on our way, another walk spoilt. It was all the more amusing as the said landowner is on the county's local access forum, and is often on local radio/TV championing access etc... obviously the wife isn't so keen  :D. Anyway thereafter I decided to inspect all the ROW on his land, and came up with a long list of issues principally about missing signposts and waymarkers, which I reported to Suffolk ROW Department. In this case after a suitable delay of about a year they did install these. Hopefully the wife was pleased with these, especially those running through the farmyard and along the field behind the farmhouse, most of which had disappeared, notwithstanding he was a champion of access ;D

Another farmer's wife whose dog was exceptionally aggressive towards us on a public road was another joy. She justified the behaviour of the dog as reasonable as they owned the fields on either side of the road. Mrs A explained that she didn't own the road and that was where we were. Anyway the farmers wife got ever more angry and said that we shouldn't complain as "she had a lot of problems" ???  She was clearly a very angry woman so we left her to it, but again another walk spoilt :(

BWW makes a very valid point about farmers understanding the value of their land for access. One farmer in the next village to ours is now allowing access to areas of his land to walkers, principally dog walkers I suspect, under an arrangement where they pay £10 per month. His land did have a number of permissive paths under Natural England's Scheme, but when this ended after ten years, he closed off access again to the general public. He has subsequently installed padlocked gates, and a lot of barbed wire, but provides keys to those that have paid for access to his land. Apparently, from talking to one of those "customers" he has about 100 people registered with him. Simple maths: 100 people £10 per month gives £12,000 per year. I am not sure that I would pay that as just a walker but for dog walkers having areas of land to let the dog off lead etc... it seems to be working for him and them.

I did point out to the lady dog walker who explained this set up to me that there really should have been some ROW on this farmers land anyway, but they clearly hadn't been put on the definitive map due to corruption thereof, but I think the detail of my argument was somewhat lost on her ;D
 

fernman

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Re: First Row With a Farmer
« Reply #13 on: 13:34:54, 23/11/17 »
Perhaps I've been fortunate, for I've had extremely few encounters with farmers over the years, and none that were bad.

The best ones include when I was with a group of botanists in the south of England; the farmer came over to see what we were up to, and ended up telling us the history of his land, finishing with the words "It's a privelege to be farming here." Another was when I unintentionally strayed off an unmarked path in North Wales; while I was studying my map trying to pinpoint my position the farmer came roaring across the land on a quad bike. He turned out to be most friendly, and correctly guessing that I would be camping, he carefully pointed out the way I should go, positively encouraging me rather than the opposite.

The not-so-good ones were when I stepped over a wire fence to avoid a cow with a very new calf that were standing by the gate in a corner of a field where I needed to get out (refer to previous posts on the forum about cows and calves). Almost as soon as I had done so, the farmer appeared at the gate and I had to grovel to him. He didn't rowlock me but he spoke in clipped tones and his face was cross. Then there was the farmer's wife who came out of the house when I was following an unsigned RoW between their buildings. She tried hard to convince me there was no footpath but I stood my ground and she eventually let me through.

Possibly what helps me is that during the 28 years I  worked with the public as a service engineer I learnt never to argue with anyone. Let them have their say without interrupting them, remain calm and polite, don't raise your voice, but stand firm. Usually thery will back down.

pauldawes

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Re: First Row With a Farmer
« Reply #14 on: 15:08:41, 23/11/17 »
I think the most frequent “unsatisfactory” interaction I have with farmers is poor signage, evidently deliberately damaged or removed.


 In my experience..that (the deliberate removal of signs) really isn’t that unusual...especially when near farmhouse itself. Certainly a lot more common than face to face “spats”.