The Black Sheep – October 2006

27 October

British Summer Time

SC:Get your mitts ready and your coats primed (if they haven’t been already) as summer officially ends this weekend.

Unusual weather, faded World Cup dreams and single farm payment problems have categorised this summer, with a winter of unusual weather, faded Ashes dreams and more single farm payment problems sure to follow.

Don’t forget that British Summer Time will come to an end this weekend. Clocks should be put back by an hour on Sunday morning (29 October).

24 October

Who’ll give me £3?

TR: It’s not very often you’ll hear one of the Black Sheep admit to black market trading – but I’ve just been doing some dealing. Yes, having been tasked by Miss Deputy News editor to shift a consignment of pumpkins (no, that isn’t street-speak for some illicit substance, that really is pumpkins) I’ve just found myself flogging a car boot-load on the edge of town. I think passers-by were particularly perplexed at the sight of Mr Stock and Sales, reversing his truck up in a dark corner of the multi-storey and transferring his stash into the back. No doubt the local constabulary have already been informed!

23 October

Calendar Girls 2

Regular readers of the Black Sheep will know that we’re fans of wall calendars.

jcb calendar 2007

Looks more orange than yellow

Whether it’s Mrs Deputy Livestock’s legendary but elusive YFC charity effort, Man Utd’s classic ’99 season, or Garfield – The Early Years, we love ‘em all.

JCB, masters of PR, joined our calendar good books last year with their 2006 “Arty Diggers” effort.

We just received a first sneak peek of this year’s creation – unsurprisingly it features naked women, silhouetted and covered in dripping yellow paint (subtle, eh? But I’m not complaining).

According to the press release, the production process involved the selected girls posing individually while a make-up artist slowly poured yellow liquid latex over the model (sounds like a tough job). 

Occasionally sections of the body were poured and photographed separately, other times the results were left to gravity.

jcb calendar 2007

The perils of not wearing coveralls

As per last year, George Bamford – youngest son of JCB owner Sir Anthony – has the enviable honour of photographing the girls.

Bamford explained that his interest in photography was no flight of fancy. 

“Just before my grandfather passed away he told me he had wanted to be a photographer but that he couldn’t afford it.  He inspired me to pursue a career as a photographer,” explained Bamford.

“In particular, photographing naked women is a family passion,” Bamford didn’t go on to say, before not going down to B&Q to buy a trolley’s worth of Barley Sunrise from Dulux.

paul spackman

Don’t mess!

michael targett

Easy does it

jane king

Flare chic

19 October

Staff photos

If you’re a reader of the magazine then I’m sure you’ve noticed the photos that sit alongside the Leader (the opinion piece on page three).

We all have to get these taken and they’re sometimes the source of much hilarity or embarrassment.

This week (20 Oct) Mr Arable Reporter had the honour and his casual office garb can be seen accompanying the weekly rant at the RPA.

Now is this casual look a turn for the better or the worse?

My own snaps are pretty casual – jeans, trainers etc … but that was probably due to the lack of notice that my photo was being taken that day.

You compare us to Mrs Farmers Weekly, who has got stylish office smart down to a fine art.

The other point to make regarding Mr Arable Reporter’s picture is that surely every farmer’s wife and daughter in the land have had their heart skip a beat at the sight of his smoldering good looks.

spackman mask smallFor those of you so smitten you’re eager for more – download a Spackman mask and print it off for your boyf/hubby to wear!



13 October

Is there anybody there? Yes, it seems…

TR: Lots of things scare me (when our accounts department query my expenses, for one) but I don’t mind admitting I was proper scared in the haunted farmhouse. It was the stairwell that really got me.

There’s certainly a story connected to the house which would suggest it could well be haunted. The thought of ever having to spend a night there on my own sends a shiver down my spine!

You can check out our audio and video footage of our night there on fwi on Oct 27 and the full story will be in Farmlife on the same date. Don’t look at it alone if you’re of a nervous disposition, though…

13 October

The believers return

ghost hunt screen shotIt’s now three days since myself, Mr Farmlife and Mr Photographer spent a night in Britain’s Most Haunted Farmhouse and I can just about bring myself to talk about it …

Not really, I’ve spent the last three days wading through hours of camera footage.

Without spoiling too much I can reveal that there was definitely something odd about that house and that something DOES happen that is hard to explain and, yes, I did get it on camera.

Well worth a watch when it goes up (Hallowe’en weekend).

9 October

Psychic News

Seems we’re reaching out to a greater audience than just online agriculture with our Britain’s Most Haunted Farmhouse feature.

psychic newsA colleague noticed that Psychic News magazine (circ. 40,000 apparently!) had run my article from Farmlife (Aug 25) pretty much verbatim complete with scary old photo – it was during my Rod Stewart phase.

You can see the pdf here …

One day to go now and am feeling surprising relaxed which is more than can be said for Mr Farmlife – the big girl.

Apparently the paranormal activity at our chosen farm has been increasing during the last fortnight. Great!

5 October

Oh weary legs…

SC: I am just about able to walk properly after running the Great North Run last Sunday. Days of hobbling and stiffness has caused great discomfort for me but for some reason great pleasure to others in the office!

Unfortunately I didn’t beat anybody famous; Gordon Ramsey beat me by about 40 minutes and as for John Motson, just don’t ask!!! At the end of it all I was just glad to finish and happy not to be beaten by anybody dressed as a cow. Below are a few pictures from the event:

GNR bridge

GNR morewaiting

GNR postrace1

4 October

Amusing vegtables no.3

Mr Europe editor discovered this gem of an aubergine in an Italian campsite shop while on his summer travels.

amusing aubergine 

The veg on the Continent had a reputation for more relaxed morals

amusing aubergine

Standing proud …

Ah … the joke never grows old.

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