Julia Visits Grizedale Forest
One of the easiest ways to look around Grizedale Forest is by mountain bike, so this week on Countryfile Julia Bradbury gives it a try. She is testing out the forest’s latest modifications, designed to make the area more suitable for its biking visitors. Julia will also take a look at the recently created ‘black route’, a steep downhill trail that’s not for the fainthearted. Along the way Julia learns more about the forest’s unique sculptures and the bygone era behind Grizedale Hall’s prisoner-of-war camp.Find out more about the forest sculptures
Releasing Red Kites
Over the past twenty years Countryfile has followed the Red Kites release project, one of the most ambitious species re-introduction programmes ever undertaken. Grizedale forest is the setting for the birds’ final release in England. Red Kites were once a rare sight in the countryside but thanks to the hard work of organisations and volunteers the UK population is now at a level that can sustain itself for centuries to come. John Craven meets David Lowe and Iain Yoxall who are preparing the birds for their first taste of freedom.Get updates on the Grizedale Red Kites
Tom Investigates Dairy Farming
This year dairy farmers have hit the headlines, protesting against cuts in the price they are being paid for liquid milk. But the problems of the British dairy industry go back much further than the last few months. Tom Heap asks whether there are fundamental problems that are holding the industry back – and gets the views of a farmer, milk processor and retailer. He also discovers some huge missed opportunities that could solve some of the financial problems faced by dairy farmers.
IMAGE: The Countryfile crew filming in a dairy.
Adam Henson looks at how his crops have fared over the last twelve months. After the droughts at the beginning of the year, followed by the wettest June on record they are really suffering and he is desperate to get them harvested. Livestock farming is also a big part of what Adam does. One of his sows is close to giving birth, so he checks to see how long it will be before he gets some new arrivals. Eric the Bull has had some problems on his feet recently, so Adam likes to keep a close eye on him. Eric’s not the only Highland Bull on the farm anymore. One of his offspring McGee is growing up fast and Adam has high hopes for him.
Beatrix Potter’s Hidden Talents
While she is in the Lake District, Julia delves into the lesser known talents and aspirations of Windermere’s most celebrated author, Beatrix Potter. As an astute young woman, Beatrix’s interests lead her to study fungi and her illustrations can still be found in scientific identification books. Her love for the countryside near her home in Cumbria also saw her buying up farms from her own fortune so that local people could continue to work the land. Julia catches up with the Mallett family, new tenant farmers on the land that encapsulates Beatrix’s legacy.Find out more about Beatrix Potter
IMAGE: Julia helping the Mallett family on their farm.
John Ruskin's Cumbria
John visits Brantwood on the shores of Coniston water, the family home of Victorian artist, philosopher and philanthropist John Ruskin. Ruskin was a champion of Cumbrian life and moved to the region to escape the traffic and pollution of 18th century London. When he first arrived he found an area losing its local industries and a population in need of retraining. Along with his peers, Ruskin set up clubs and organisations to help teach locals new and traditional skills. John takes a tour of the area and discovers that Ruskin’s ideas are still going strong. He meets local people who are learning how to scythe and, in Coniston, visits an arts project that has given local people a chance to showcase their skills.Find out more about John Ruskin’s home
IMAGE: John and his scything tutor Steve Tomlin.
- Series Producer
- Teresa Bogan
- Julia Bradbury
- John Craven
- Tom Heap
- Adam Henson