FINALIST FOR FARM WORKER
OF THE YEAR
Sponsored by: Isuzu UK
New House Farm, M. A. Richards (Hawling), Gloucestershire
Daniel Coleman has been working for the company for the past seven years. The 321-hecatre (800-acre) unit comprises owned and rented land and is a sheep and arable farm with additional contacting work.
Crops grown include wheat, barley, OSR, beans, fodder beet, kale and stubble turnips., while the sheep enterprise is made up of 1,200 breeding ewes and replacements.
Over the last few years, expansion of the flock and a change in system has seen the business move away from a traditional Mule breed to a New Zealand Texel. Rams with high maternal EBVs are selected to provide replacements capable of lambing outdoors and with little or no assistance.
Daniel works across the business but is predominantly a tractor driver with responsibility for all arable operations, helping out on the sheep side when workloads are high. He is seen as an integral member of the business and his drive and commitment has seen him really drive forward technological advancement to improve efficiency.
His capability has allowed the farm to expand significantly over the last few years, winning contracting jobs and allowing his boss the space to be able to concentrate much more on expanding the sheep flock and office work.
Daniel was also a tremendous support to the business last spring when the farm faced a Campylobacter abortion storm. Lamb losses were the highest on record for the farm – morale was low and the workload was high. Daniel worked extremely long hours and was a source of invaluable emotional support during that time.
Looking to the future he says he would one day like to own his own small farm with his partner but for now he wants to take on more of the arable ide of the business and would love, he says, to bring cattle to the farm.