MEMORIES ARE WONDERFUL THINGS!

When I first saw the archive material that later became ‘Fenland Farming 55’, my first reaction was ‘That’s my childhood!’. As the son of a small farmer on the Lincolnshire Fens I could remember most of the machines, animals and farming practices to be seen.

The author ready to fetch swill from Folkingham airfield for his father's pigs
The author ready to fetch swill from Folkingham airfield for his father's pigs

Those same memories all came flooding back when I set out to write ‘Memories of Lincolnshire Farming’. The idea was to write about the changes in farming methods and machines over the past 100 years. I took it as roughly the working lives of my grandfather and father – Grandpa came back from the Boer War in Sough Africa in about 1903 to work with his father, and my Dad decided to give up keeping sheep shortly before his death in 2005.

Herbert, Norman and shorthorn c1935
Not surprisingly I couldn’t cover the whole spectrum of farming in this pre-eminent farming county just through my family’s memories, but I did have the invaluable resource of the family memories of many of the listeners and contributors to ‘Lincolnshire farming’ on BBC Radio Lincolnshire, who shared their stories and their pictures with me. From the reaction I am getting from readers, it seems to have set a lot more memories flowing – I may have to have a Vol II just to keep up with the stories!

Alan Stennett

You can buy Alan’s new book ‘Memories of Lincolnshire Farming’ from our online catalogue.