Andrew Freemantle puts a cash value on local shops

What’s £1000 an hour? (Not Wayne Rooney’s new contract). Answer at the bottom of the article.

I must start with a thank you to all my staff for working over and above the call of duty, making sure the pigs were fed and watered and the Mole Valley catering trailers stayed open over the cold snap. A special thanks also to Ray and Russell Lee who left home at 4am and walked eight miles in a blizzard to get in.

I did not have time to see Dr Who on Christmas day, as I spent most of the day filling emergency water troughs, like most livestock farmers. I have a message to supermarkets: You should appreciate how lucky you are having UK farmers providing you with produce. We never, ever, take snow days. So please show your appreciation with fair contracts.

During the bad weather, and with most roads impassable, it was amazing to see people out and about walking to their local shops. Suddenly when cars/ lorries became unavailable, short food chains became sensible. It’s not like we needed to know that but, I found it reassuring to see it in action. That small abattoir that closed years ago could make a comeback when oil is £300 a barrel.

Oh, and as for £1000 an hour? That’s what our local shop was taking when people could not get to the supermarkets and had to shop locally. This just goes to show how much money is taken out of the local economy by shopping in national chains.

Farmer Focus Livestock