Our farm is a very important part of our lives. The farm has been in James' family for many years and he is the 3rd generation to farm it, along with his wife Susan and their young children. For 10 years we have dreamed of turning redundant farm buildings into Orkney holiday accommodation. This has been made possible through a Scottish Rural Development Grant to help towards the costs of renovating these beautiful buildings to provide sustainable self-catering in Orkney whilst retaining their original character.
We keep around 70 suckler cows and their followers on the farm along with a small flock of pedigree Suffolk sheep which was established in the 60's by James' Grandfather. We also grow spring barley for feeding to our cattle as well as selling to a few local farmers. Though farming conventionally, we farm with the environment in mind using fertilisers and sprays only where necessary.
We entered into a biodiversity plan in 2010 which saw areas fenced off to preserve waterways and wetlands. Along with planting 6000 native trees and 1000 metres of hedgeline, we have also planted areas to benefit feeding birds in the winter and some species rich grassland with wild flowers. Already we have noticed an increase in wildlife.