The greatest reward of touring the countryside with microphone in pocket and pen behind ear, is the opportunity for new experiences.
Badger Faced Sheep. A name that conjures copious images, but none as pretty as the sheep themselves.
I’ve spent a considerable part of my life surrounded by sheep, certainly long enough to get to sleep… but despite hours chasing, careering after and cursing them, I’ve never met a Badger Faced.
Set in the immaculate grounds of an immaculate house on the outskirts of immaculate York, was Claire’s flock of sturdy and exquisitely marked sheep. The breed has boomed in recent years, although to the casual observer, that seems to be the trend of the majority of minority breeds.
It’s a heartening situation. The bedrock of humanity is the food we eat and the traditional breeds are at the very base of those foundations. Their days of being maligned as unproductive and unviable seem to have passed; new trends, new money and new outlooks. A new future.
The Badger Faced Sheep Society is celebrating its fortieth anniversary year, an apt reason to visit a flock and discover the roots to its recent success.
So despite the rain that darkened my waxed jacket, but brightened my boots, it was a pleasure to stomp around the field looking at sheep. Appreciating their good fortunes and the pride of their shepherd.
I only spend a brief moment within someone’s world: but with the patter of rain against leaves, punctuating the swish of long grass against hooves and the heady scent of dampened sheep mixing with dark tones of wet wax. It’s always immersive.