Image for 23/08/2009Not currently available on BBC iPlayer

Duration: 55 minutes

Julia Bradbury heads to Wiltshire to join a group of enthusiasts as they try to establish whether Milk Hill or Tan Hill is the county's tallest. Could their discovery change the Ordnance Survey map forever?
John Craven investigates the campaign to get consumers to eat less meat, and finds out if it could really make a difference to climate change.

And it's a busy time down on Adam's farm as he brings in this year's harvest.


    Tan Hill and Milk Hill, are supposedly the same height. On OS maps they both stand at 294 Metres. But surely one must be taller than the other?

    In a TV first, Countryfile is going to find out which. We have enlisted the help of three men perfect for the job - John Barnard, Myrddyn Phillips and Graham Jackson. Last autumn, it was their accurate measurements of a hill in Snowdonia that led to it being reclassified as a mountain. So which Wiltshire hill will be the winner?

    Visit Wiltshire website: Walking in Wiltshire

    Wiltshire is far from the pampas plains of Argentina but they do share some similarities. Like true gauchos, Andrew and Rachel Brown use Criollo horses to help manage their cattle on Clastone Down. They think this traditional South American technique not only benefits the cattle, but the land and wildlife too.

    Wikipedia: Criollo

    Salisbury Plain is a military training ground. Its remote location fits its purpose perfectly, but it also makes it the ideal habitat for the largest flying bird in the world, the great bustard. They were extinct in Britain for over 150 years, but they’ve been recently re-introduced. So far the outlook is bright because a couple of months ago the first chicks were born. Countryfile has been following the bustards’ progress and Julia’s with David Waters, from the great bustards group, and wildlife cameraman Manuel Hinge, to find out more about this rare bird.

    The UK Great Bustard reintroduction project

    Wiltshire is a hotspot for crop circles – but just how they get there is open to some debate. Perhaps they’re messages from outer space or just a creative wind up? Who knows!

    Tim Carson’s had crop circles on his land for twenty years but he’s never seen anyone making them. He’s even had spotters out at night and filmed areas of land where they’ve appeared, but never seen anyone going in or out. Julia’s off to find out more….

    Circlemakers website

    Cattle and sheep produce large amounts of methane as part of their digestive process. It’s 20 times more damaging as a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide, and a significant contributor to global warming. Some environmental campaigners argue that we should eat less meat to help save the planet, but the industry says we don’t eat that much compared to other countries and it’s an important part of a balanced diet. John Craven investigates.

    BBC Food: Ethics of eating meat

    This week Adam finally beats the wet weather to get started on the harvest. And first up is rape seed - used for cooking oil and margarine. It’s a race against time to get it all in the shed, but Adam’s happy to get stuck in and lends a hand operating the combine harvester...


    Growing your own fruit and veg has never been so popular but what about growing your own meat?

    Well currently, 10,000 people in the UK do. Katie Knapman’s off to meet a couple on a mission to be self-sufficient and they’re about to take their first home reared pigs to slaughter.

    DEFRA: Livestock movements, identification and tracing: registering your livestock

    If you’re out bird spotting, now’s the perfect time to catch a glimpse of one of our top predators - the barn owl. Over the last three hundred years their numbers have dropped dramatically and now only 5,000 pairs remain. This huge decline is attributed to the way our towns and cities have expanded. We’ve taken over lots of the open grassland favoured by barn owls and with it, many of the farm buildings and barns that make ideal nesting spots have gone too.

    Dave Short is a volunteer with the Aylesbury Vale’s Barn Owl group. Like similar organisations across the country he’s involved in monitoring their numbers. Jules Hudson is out with Dave, ringing barn owl chicks and finding what we can do to help their cause.

    Barn Owl Monitoring Programme website


John Craven
Julia Bradbury
Matt Baker
Adam Henson
Teresa Bogan


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