Organic farm - Low Sizergh Farm dairy herd

Low Sizergh Farm, South Cumbria – a 2021 BOOM Awards Finalist

A South Cumbrian family dairy farm is a finalist in the Soil Association’s 2021 Best of Organic Market (BOOM) Awards. Low Sizergh Farm near Kendal is one of three finalists in a new category, best of organic farms over 10 hectares. The two other farms are in Oxfordshire and Somerset. The Park family has farmed…

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September calving

Here at Low Sizergh Farm, we have a 170 strong crossbred herd of Holsteins, Swedish Red and Montbeliards as well as 700 hens, and a flock of 200 Swaledale and Mule sheep. Farmer Richard’s aim is to use good farming practice to achieve excellent productivity and enhanced animal welfare. We are eight years into autumn…

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From chemical fertiliser to a holistic approach to farming

“I felt we were advancing in agriculture, we were there to grow more food for the country if you like, yes 1948-49, still growing food for the country.” Wilson Robinson was born in 1916, and witnessed many changes in his long farming career. As the grandfather of Alison and Richard Park, who currently run Low…

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Sheep shearing: low wool prices

Sheep shearing, or clipping as we call it locally, is an extended family job here at Low Sizergh Farm. Farmer Richard’s son, Matthew, is the family’s nominated shearer and they share the work with Richard’s brother-in-law. His purpose-built trailer accommodates three shearers and helps control the flow of sheep. It makes shorter work of shearing…

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Ploughing at Low Sizergh Farm: connecting to age-old rituals

Spring work continues here at Low Sizergh Farm with ploughing, harrowing, stone picking, seed drilling and rolling. No one likes picking stones. There isn’t a machine for it and the only tool is hands. Yet, for Farmer Richard, it’s satisfying to be working on tasks that form part of a complete and natural cycle: the…

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farm diversification at low sizergh barn

Farm diversification: the Low Sizergh story

In April 1984, milk quotas limited how much a farmer could produce. This prompted us to start diversifying. 35 years on, our family dairy farm is home to our lovely farm shop, and 2020 will see the opening of a new caravan and campsite on the farm. So, what exactly does diversification mean here at…

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sustainable dairy farming at Low Sizergh Barn

Sustainable dairy farming

In light of the climate change crisis, many recent headlines call for a shift to exclusively plant-based diets. However, sustainable dairy farming and low-greenhouse gas emission systems of livestock production can actually present major opportunities for climate adaptation as well as generating benefits to human health. So, what are we doing at Low Sizergh to…

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Highlanders arrive at Low Sizergh Farm

We’ve recently welcomed in some Highlander sheep to Low Sizergh Farm. Whilst it was normal to find dairy farmers raising sheep as breeding stock or producing lambs forty years ago, it is now far less common. So, why have we decided to increase the number of sheep grazing our farmland? Our previous flock was only…

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muck spreading at Low Sizergh Farm environmental improvements in techniques for manure management

Helping the environment through manure management

At Low Sizergh Farm, we are tackling something that has been part of the farming cycle for centuries – manure management. When done well, it benefits the soil of our organic farm, the pasture, and the farm’s dairy herd whilst also reducing air pollution. Muck-spreading is important for both livestock rearing and the annual farming…

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rotational grazing for sheep

Rotational grazing for sheep: reviving an ancient grazing approach

Did you know that our dairy farm also has a flock of 120 sheep? The mix of mules, which are a cross between Swaledales and Bluefaced Leicesters, and recently-introduced Highlanders, benefit from our farm-wide practice of rotational grazing. Rotational grazing for sheep makes the health of the animals and the land they graze joint priorities.…

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