Joanna Shimwell, 34, who manages the 100 acre Dale Farm, is one of three new faces featured in Born Mucky: Life on the Farm, returning for its new run on Quest on Tuesday, July 20, and streaming now on Discovery+.
The youngest member of the family, she is the first Shimwell woman to run the livestock farm, having left a desk job six years ago to begin taking the reins from dad John.
She said: “Taking part seemed like an exciting opportunity that doesn’t come along every day. On the whole it was really fun to be filmed.
“I am passionate about farming and the local area so it seemed like a wonderful chance to showcase a small farm life in the Peak District and the care and environment that our livestock experience.”
She added: “It was strange that a lot of the filming was done during lockdown so the only people we would see would be a tiny crew, it was nice to have someone different to chat to.
“I’m used to filming myself for my YouTube channel but this was a good exercise in realising what I know, and what I have learned from my dad working on the farm as I would have to explain why I was doing a particular job and the significance of it.”
One of the key storylines covered in the programme follows the falling demand for red meat, and therefore prices, in recent years.
The sale of their cattle is a major source of income, but as foot rot spread among their lambs the farm was in grave danger of missing its financial targets for the year – while the farm’s seasonal campsite operation with limited staff and Covid changes meant Joanna was never off the clock.
To top it all off, the cameras also caught Joanna juggling the men in her life – boyfriend Nick and dad John.
She said: “I really hope the show highlights how much of an unpredictable environment farming can be, how the weather plays a huge part in your success or failure, and how a good sense of humour and attitude is needed to keep going day in, day out.
“Farmers face life and death, joy and disappointment, good fortune and bad fortune on a daily basis. You never know what you will get.”