11 July 2000
Farmer profits from ‘barn’ dancing

AN Irish farmer has converted has converted some of his farm buildings to form Irelands only residential ballet school, reports the Financial Times.

Philip Dawson and his South African wife Anica Louw have “taken to heart the Irish governments exhortation for farmers to diversify”, says the paper.

Mr Dawson estimates he generates half his income from the school and would love to give up farming to dedicate himself to his dance charity, it adds.

The paper quotes an unspecified report which forecasts that the number of farms in Ireland will fall from about 150,000 to 100,000 by 2010.

The same report predicts that the number of part-time farmers will increase from 38,500 to 60,000 over the same period.

  • Financial Times, page 10