Appendix 6
Notes of the Stock Kept at Clifton-on-Bowmont
Farm by the Factor

Before the farm was taken in hand by the proprietor in 1887, it had carried a half-bred stock (Leicester-Cheviot cross), but from the then poverty-stricken state of the holding, and the want of grass in the arable fields, it was thought advisable to stock the outer or higher land with Cheviots, restricting the half-breds to the lower land, with the view of making the farm as much as possible self-supporting, in the way of turnips for ewes in the winter and spring months. This system of stocking was carried on for fifteen years (1887-1902).

In view of a considerable portion of the arable land being laid down to grass, a change in the system was made in 1902, the halfbreds which during the period above-mentioned had formed the stock on the lower portion of the farm, were sold and replaced by Cheviots, so that from 1902 the whole breeding stock of the farm has been Cheviots.

As some controversy has arisen, and as opinions differ as to which of these systems is the best to adopt on such a farm as Clifton-on-Bowmont, particulars of the management of both systems are here given, and the reader may thus figure out the results for himself.

Period 1887-1902
Management of Cheviot Stock on the Outer Portion of the Farm

The stock were in five ages, viz: ewe-hoggs, gimmers, one crop, two crop, and three crop ewes. The one, two, and three crop ewes, were put to the Leicester tup, and the gimmers to the Cheviot. During winter the ewes received no artificial feeding, but in the event of a snowstorm or hard frost a daily allowance of hay was supplied. From time to time during the winter any lean ewes were drawn out and received a little extra treatment. Previous to lambing the ewes got turnips for about four weeks, being either folded on them for a few hours daily, and run off to grass afterwards, or the turnips were cut and laid down on the grass land. The ewe-hoggs were grass-wintered on the hill supplemented with a daily allowance of one-quarter to one-half lb of mixed cotton cake and dried grains, and for a month in the spring they received, in addition, a cart load of cut turnips per day, per hundred. The ewes bringing half-bred lambs received no artificial food after lambing time.

In the month of August the lambs were weaned, the half-bred wedder and cheviot wedder lambs being marketed, and as many of the half-bred ewe lambs as were fit for breeding, were retained to keep up the half-bred stock on the lower part of the farm. In the same way as many as possible of the Cheviot ewe lambs from the gimmer age were kept for stock purposes. The draft age (five years) were sold in September.

Management of the Half-Bred Stock

This stock, as previously mentioned, was confined to the lower part of the farm, and was in four ages, viz: ewe-hoggs, gimmers, one and two crop ewes; the gimmers and the one and two crop ewes being all put to the half-bred tup. The fields and lower portion of the hill ground, supplemented with a daily allowance of one-half lb cotton cake, generally kept the ewes until about the month of January, when they received a further allowance of a cart load of turnips per day per hundred. About the end of February the cake was discontinued and the turnips gradually increased from this to lambing time (April 1st). The ewes were folded on turnips during the day and run off to grass land at night. Turnips were laid down to the ewes during lambing time and until the lambs were a fortnight old, when they received no artificial feeding of any kind.

The half-bred ewe-hoggs were wintered on turnips, at the rate of a cart load per day per hundred, with a daily allowance of one-half lb mixed cotton cake and dried grains, and as much cut hay and straw as they could eat. During August and September the whole of the half-bred ewe and wedder lambs were marketed, as also the draft age of ewes.

In order to keep up the stock under this system it was necessary to buy each year a number of Cheviot ewe lambs, as the number of ewe lambs available from the gimmer age was insufficient. These, together with the Leicester half-bred and Cheviot tups required, were all the sheep stock it was necessary to buy each year.

The Present System

As before mentioned the whole of the breeding stock is now Cheviots. These are in four ages and are drafted as five-year-olds. The three and two crop, together with a proportion of the one crop ewes, are mated with a Leicester tup; the remainder of the one crop ewes and the gimmers being put to the Cheviot tup.

During winter the ewes and gimmers are treated alike, and (with the exception of any ewes showing signs of getting lean, which are drafted out from time to time) receive no artificial feeding except during a snowstorm or severe frost, when a daily allowance of hay is supplied to them.

About the end of February or beginning of March, the ewes have a few turnips laid down to them on the grass land, at the rate of a cart load per day, per hundred. This is continued for about ten days, when the ewes are folded on turnips during the day, and run off to grass land at night until the time of lambing (April 1st).

The ewes bringing half-bred lambs are allowed turnips during lambing time, but those in lamb to the Cheviot tup, are lambed on the hill ground without any extra feeding. The Cheviot ewe-hoggs are wintered in the same way as the same class of stock under the previous system. The marketing of the half-bred wedder lambs is begun early in August and is followed by the half-bred ewe lambs. These being first cross command a high price for breeding purposes. The Cheviot wedder lambs and also the draft age of ewes are sold in September. Under this system a few Cheviot ewe lambs are bought each year to keep up the stock. These and the necessary Leicester and Cheviot tups constitute the only other purchases.

Cattle. During the first twelve years very little breeding of cattle was carried on. The necessary number of cattle for breaking down the straw was bought during October in each year and wintered on straw and cotton cake. A portion of them was sold in the spring following, and the remainder was grazed and sold in the autumn. As the profit under this system was uncertain and very variable, it was decided to make the farm self-supporting in the way of cattle, by breeding what was required. A start was made by retaining some of the heifer calves from the best shorthorn dairy cows, from the Home Farm, and these along with a few pedigree shorthorn cows which were purchased formed the foundation of the present herd. The cows are all put to a pedigree shorthorn bull. The heifers are served to calve at two years old, and suckle their calves, as three and four year olds. They suckle two calves each and are generally drafted as five-year-olds, being served so as to calve early in the year in which they are drafted. The calves are weaned in November, and are wintered on a few turnips and some hay, with a daily allowance of linseed cake and crushed oats. In May the steers are sold, as also any heifers not required for stock purposes. The bull calves from the pedigree cows are brought out for sale and sold at the annual bull sales in spring.

Horses. None are bred on the farm as the stony nature of the ground is unfavourable to the proper development of the foot of the young horse.

Pigs. A few sows of the large white breed are kept and their produce sold at about eight weeks old.

In the writer's opinion, a half-bred stock on the lower land, with a Cheviot stock on the outer portion of the farm, is the system which will pay most rent, and there seems no reason why the fertility of the land should not be as well maintained under this system of stocking, as it would be were it under a stock consisting entirely of Cheviots.

Rotation of Crops on Clifton-on-Bowmont Farm

The following is a record of the cropping on Clifton-on-Bowmont Farm for the last twenty years:

Alghope Field, North Section, 15 acres
1890 Grass (sown 1884) 1895 Oats 1899-1905 Grass
1891 Turnips 1896 Rape 1906 Rape
1892 Oats and Seeds 1897 Turnips 1907 Oats
1893-4 Grass 1898 Oats and Seeds xx
Alghope Field, Middle Section, 15 acres
1890-6 Grass (sown 1884) 1898 Oats and Seeds
1899-1907 Grass
1897 Rape xx xx
Alghope Field, South Section, 10 acres
1890-1907 Grass (sown 1884)
Alghope Field, South top corner, 1 acre
1890-1903 Grass (sown 1884) 1904 Rape, Buckwheat and Seeds 1905-7 Grass
Bank Field, 27 acres
1890 Grass (sown 1888) 1894-6 Grass 1900 Barley and Seeds*
1891 Oats 1897 Turnips 1901 Hay
1892 Turnips 1898 Oats and Barley 1902-7 Grass
1893 Barley and Seeds 1899 Turnips xx
*The Mixture of Seeds sown in 1900 was the now celebrated 'Bank field' Mixture
Big Countridge Field, 22 acres
1890 Turnips 1895 Turnips 1899 Hay
1891 Oats and Seeds 1896 Oats 1900-6 Grass
1892 Hay 1897 Turnips 1907 Turnips
1893-4 Grass 1898 Oats and Seeds xx
Big Haugh Field, 29 acres
1890-1 Grass (sown 1886) 1895-1900 Grass 1904 Oats and Seeds
1892 Turnips 1901 Turnips 1905 Hay
1893 Oats and Seeds 1902 Oats 1906-7 Grass
1894 Hay 1903 Turnips xx
Bowmont-side Field, 16 acres
1887 Barley and Seeds 1896 Turnips 1903 Turnips
1888 Hay 1897 Barley and Seeds 1904 Oats and Seeds
1889-92 Grass 1898 Hay 1905 Grass
1893 Oats 1899-1900 Grass 1906 Hay
1894 Turnips 1901 Turnips 1907 Grass
1895 Barley 1902 Oats xx
Bowmont-side Field, Top Section, 5 acres
1887 Barley and Seeds 1888 Hay 1889-1907 Grass
Chapel Croft Field, 14 acres
1890 Turnips 1896-7 Grass 1903-4 Grass
1891 Oats and Trefoil 1898 Turnips 1905 Hay
1892 Grass 1899 Oats 1906 Turnips
1893 Turnips 1900 Turnips 1907 Oats
1894 Barley and Seeds 1901 Barley and Seeds xx
1895 Hay 1902 Hay xx
East Countridge Field, 15 acres
1890 Turnips 1895 Oats and Seeds 1905 Oats
1891 Oats and Seeds 1896-1903 Grass 1906 Turnips
1892-3 Grass 1904 Turnips 1907 Oats and Seeds
1894 Turnips xx xx
Front Field, 21 acres
1887 Barley and Seeds 1895 Barley 1905 Turnips
1888-92 Grass 1896 Turnips 1906 Barley and Seeds
1893 Oats 1897 Oats and Seeds 1907 Hay
1894 Turnips 1898-1904 Grass xx
Harewells Field, 19 acres
1890-1 Grass (sown 1888) 1895-9 Grass 1903 Oats and Seeds
1892 Oats 1900 Turnips 1904 Hay
1893 Turnips 1901 Oats 1905-7 Grass
1894 Oats and Seeds 1902 Turnips xx
Hayhope Shank Field, East Side, 18 acres
1887 Turnips 1895 Turnips 1903 Barley
1888 Barley and Seeds 1896 Oats and Seeds 1904 Turnips
1889-92 Grass 1897-1900 Grass 1905 Oats and Seeds
1893 Turnips 1901 Oats 1906 Hay
1894 Oats 1902 Turnips 1907 Grass
Hayhope Shank Field, West Side, 23 acres
1887 Turnips 1894 Oats 1900 Oats
1888 Barley and Seeds 1895 Turnips 1901 Turnips
1889 Hay 1896 Oats and Seeds 1902 Barley and Seeds
1890-2 Grass 1897 Hay 1903 Hay
1893 Turnips 1898-9 Grass 1904-7 Grass
Inner Kaimrig Field, 25 acres
1890 Oats and Seeds 1896 Hay 1902 Turnips
1891-3 Grass 1897-9 Grass 1903 Oats and Seeds
1894 Turnips 1900 Turnips 1904-7 Grass
1895 Oats and Seeds 1901 Oats xx
Little Countridge Field, 10 acres
1890 Barley and Seeds 1896 Oats 1904 Hay
1891 Hay 1897 Turnips 1905 Oats
1892-4 Grass 1898 Oats and Seeds 1906 Turnips
1895 Turnips 1899-1903 Grass 1907 Oats and Seeds
Little Countridge, Island Field, 3 acres
1890 Barley and Seeds 1904 Hay 1907 Potatoes and Cabbage
1891 Hay 1905 Oats xx
1892-1903 Grass 1906 Turnips xx
Little Haugh Field, 15 acres
1890 Oats 1895 Oats 1899 Barley and Seeds
1891 Turnips 1896 Turnips 1900 Hay
1892 Barley and Seeds 1897 Oats 1901-6 Grass
1893 Hay 1898 Turnips 1907 Hay
1894 Turnips xx xx
Outer Kaimrig Field, 23 acres
1890 Oats and Seeds 1898 Turnips 1904 Grass
1891-5 Grass 1899 Oats and Seeds 1905 Turnips
1896 Turnips 1900-2 Grass 1906 Oats
1897 Oats 1903 Hay 1907 Barley
Shereburgh Field, East Side, 18 acres
1897 Grass (sown 1875) 1899 Oats 1901 Oats and Seeds
1898 Turnips 1900 Turnips 1902-7 Grass
Shereburgh Field, West Side, 15 acres
1897 Grass (sown 1875) 1899 Turnips 1901-7 Grass
1898 Oats 1900 Oats and Seeds xx
Woodhill Field, 24 acres
1890 Oats 1890 Turnips 1903-5 Grass
1891 Turnips 1900 Oats 1906 Oats
1892 Oats and Seeds 1901 Turnips 1907 Turnips
1893-8 Grass 1902 Oats and Seeds xx

Next: Appendix 7

Back to Contents

Back to Small Farms Library index

Community development | Rural development
City farms | Organic gardening | Composting | Small farms | Biofuel | Solar box cookers
Trees, soil and water | Seeds of the world | Appropriate technology | Project vehicles

Home | What people are saying about us | About Handmade Projects 
Projects | Internet | Schools projects | Sitemap | Site SearchDonations | Contact us