Edwardian Farm: The hard graft of country life

Wednesday 10 November 2010, 12:00

Ruth Goodman Ruth Goodman

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Our Edwardian Farm year is over! We have packed up the cottage, sent the animals off to their new homes and said a reluctant goodbye to all the many local people who so generously helped us.

But although it's over for the farming team and the crew - you can join us at the very beginning when the new series airs tonight on BBC Two.

Peter Ginn, Alex Langlands and Ruth Goodman in Edwardian Farm

It has been such a full year, hardly time to breathe let alone think. Alex Langlands, Peter Ginn and I are now quite a long standing team. Having lived through a 1620s year for Tales Of The Green Valley and then an 1880s year for Victorian Farm together we know each other well and have all ended up with our own interests and responsibilities.

This year we moved the filming to Devon, at Morwellham Quay, and while the action is based primarily on the farm, the new location allowed us to explore other aspects of the working countryside, including rivers, coasts and mining.

Peter's soft spot this year was for his fish. When it was suggested that we should have a go at hatching and raising trout for the sport fishing trade, Alex and I were rather sceptical, but Peter got stuck in immediately.

The odd contraption in the woods was regularly fiddled with and lovingly supplied with fresh juicy maggots throughout the summer. I don't know who was most surprised at its success, Peter or us.

Alex arrived for the year with his own cockerel - Sunny - under one arm, determined to make a go of poultry farming. My, was that cockerel pampered.

Ruth Goodman on her bike

As we accurately portray the life of the era and the roles played by men and women, I always get the domestic work, which whilst it does mean loads of cleaning and washing also means that I get to do loads of cooking and making things, both of which I really enjoy.


Ooh the food of this region has been a joy - scrummy and interesting. I also got a bike - wheeeeeee!!! The freedom, the speed, you have no idea of the sense of liberation.

Around the farm Peter supplied the most astonishing amount of muscle. Think you need a machine to do that job? Ha! Call Peter! It is not possible to overstate just how physical Edwardian country life was.

We have certainly all worked our socks off, farming, mining, scrubbing, fishing, a thousand and one jobs. Definitely worth it though, we have had a great year, so interesting, loads of fun and wonderful, wonderful people.

Ruth Goodman is a participant in Edwardian Farm.

Edwardian Farm is on BBC Two at 8pm on Wednesday, 10 November.

For further programme times, please visit the upcoming episodes page.

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Comments

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    Comment number 1.

    Can you please remind me what breed of sheep you went for in the Edwardian Farm?

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    Comment number 2.

    Fantastic....I live on the Cornish side of the Tamar......just opposite where thsi is being filmed. Only one complaint.......WHY does the narrator keep calling it Morewellam??? It was pronounced correctly at the start of the programme....It's More-Well-Ham!!!!!

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    Comment number 3.

    Another fantastic series. Thanks aunty.

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    Comment number 4.

    We have hugely enjoyed watching the Victorian farm programmes. They've also been a great way to learn about history for my children. I home educate one of them and am grateful for this help with history so I have spread the 'Victorian Farm' word to the home education groups that we belong to.
    The subjects have been fascinating and the presenters are so likeable. Thanks to everyone responsible for such interesting, entertaining and educational programmes.

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    Comment number 5.


    'It has been such a full year, hardly time to breathe let alone think.'
    '... we have had a great year, so interesting, loads of fun ... '
    Forgive me if this has been covered elsewhere, but do the three people really spend a full year at the farm? I mean, are they actually living at the farm for at least, say, 300 of the 365 days and nights?

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    Comment number 6.

    doodle dandy: the sheep are Whitefaced Dartmoors.

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    Comment number 7.

    Another great piece of educational entertainment. Ruth, Alex & Peter have a wonderful approach and their interest and enthusiasm is infectious. Cannot wait for next week. Thanks

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    Comment number 8.

    I have just enjoyed the first episode of the series and was not disappointed.
    As I (sadly) can't find anyone to build me a time machine, this series is the next best thing! Having been glued to my TV set during Tales of the Green Valley and the Victorian Farm, I can see myself being transfixed by rural Edwardian loveliness!

    Thank you so very much and now I'm off to make sheep's head stew. (Ahem.)

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    Comment number 9.

    Yesterday a phrase used was to 'absail' down the pit, is this an edwardian expression ?

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    Comment number 10.

    could you let me know who the clothing supplier for the programme was?

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    Comment number 11.

    I thoroughly enjoyed tonight's programme (notwithstanding the sheep's head!) but was surprised to see a latchet hook being used for rug making. I understood that they were invented in the 1920s, taking the design from knitting machines. Is this wrong? A wooden bodger, custom made or crafted from an old clothes peg, would have been more likely in Edwardian times, or a Brown's patent rug making tool for the better off. I have many types of rug making tool so if you ever do a programme with rugs again I would be happy to help. I work at Bantock House Museum in Wolverhampton where I started the very popular rug making group.

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    Comment number 12.

    Did they close Morwellham to the public just during filming? I haven't been there for quite a few years, but it is a great day out.

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    Comment number 13.

    Hello from the Netherlands! :) I just want to say how much I enjoyed the first episode of Edwardian Farm. I absolutely loved Victorian Farm last year, and I looked forward to seeing more of Ruth, Peter and Alex. This first episode has been a joy to watch, and I can't wait to find out more! :) ~ Anneke ~

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    Comment number 14.

    Hi There, I have only just returned from holiday and have missed episode 1, does anyone know if it will be repeated in the near future? I know that I can watch it on iplayer but I like to record the series to DVD. I would be grateful if any kind person out there has a copy to send me. I love these series. Thanks.

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    Comment number 15.

    Disappointed at the complete misunderstanding /misinformation on the nature and use of Quicklime and confusing it with Ground Limestone. Quicklime is highly caustic and corrosive and was (and still is) used for building ( mortar )whitewash,painting walls,sanitizing and disinfecting. It would be insane to spread it on grass which would 'burn' the earth where nothing would grow for years. .. so much for research and general knowledge at the Beeb.
    Earl

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    Comment number 16.

    I am also interested in the costumes. Are there any patterns available?

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    Comment number 17.

    I too wondered about the use of quick lime. Surely it is a dangerous thing to be transporting around the country in an open wagon. Would you not have slaked it first? It is no wonder the horse was a bit skittish when they were trying to spread it.
    The rest of the programme was a joy, especially seeing how the whole community knits together with all the extras, like the boat bringing in supplies. It was a joy to watch.
    Some things make the licence fee worthwhile.

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    Comment number 18.

    Would someone tell me the names of the 2 heavy horses on the farm please. I painted a portrait of the 2 horses that were at Morwellham Quay in 2002, Rob & Mac, one looks like the lighter coloured horse with the grey mane but I don't recognise the darker of the 2 horses.

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    Comment number 19.

    I was looking forward to this series but, as a previous "blogger" has commented, PLEASE stop calling it Morwellum it is pronounced More well ham! I have lived in the area for a large part of my life and, in fact, had a friend who lived there when I was a child. I realise that programmes are recorded in advance but please try to ensure the correct pronunciation in future programmes

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    Comment number 20.

    Another brilliant episode of this fantastic series based on brilliant ideas. Even if the very toothsome Peter Gill was not in it, I would still watch it.

    With all the recessions and cut backs we will soon be moving backwards in the way we do things insted of forwards. Is Peter Welsh BTW, my friend says yet.
    Great show, thanks.

 

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