Plans: Last year was a bit of a rocky time for me. I had a few unfortunate moments and I am currently recovering from having spinal surgery. However, I am expecting great things from 2016 and there are lots of ideas in the pipeline. But, for the time being, my focus is solely on the sheep and my pup, Bess.
Lambing: This is, without a doubt, my favourite time of year. Last year I lambed with a couple of local farms which had about 800-1,500 ewes lambing.
Both gave me a unique insight into how different farms can have hugely contrasting systems to suit their specific needs. It helped me see how the way I manage my flock is unique to me and how I like to do things.
I am looking forward to expanding my numbers, come April time. For me, nothing comes close to seeing new life born and watching these leggy little bundles hopping and skipping around without a care in the world.
Bess: Bess is my border collie pup. She is nine months old and I am preparing to start her on the sheep properly in the next month. She has incredible stamina with a good eye and a keen interest in sheep. With these attributes, I know she will make a fine sheepdog once trained.
I have chosen to train her myself, without the help of another dog. People tell me I am crazy but watch this space.
Sheep: At the moment I have a moderate range of sheep breeds, from Norfolk Horns to Suffolks to Jacob X Welsh Mountains and a few more in between.
I have a number of targets for the sheep, including increasing my numbers and adding a pedigree flock to run alongside the carcase flock. Although this may take a few years to accomplish and build upon, I am fully prepared for the task ahead.
Knowledge: You can never have too much knowledge or experience in this sector. Although I have broadened my understanding and skills in the industry immeasurably over a number of years, I will be looking to find further avenues to explore to build on the foundations I already have, hopefully even venturing further afield.
I am immensely looking forward to the amazing opportunities and endeavours which this year holds for me.