On the evening of Friday 29 November 2019 we marked the success of our Down on the Farm film commission project with a private celebration event at the Museum of Barnstaple and North Devon. The film makers, their farmers, project partners and funders came together for a premiere screening of the six short documentary films prior to their public release on 1 December.
This was an opportunity for us to congratulate the film makers and thank the farmers for their contributions as well as giving the guests a chance to meet them and talk about their films. The Museum were wonderful hosts - a fabulous venue and delicious refreshments provided by the Museum's new 'Bromley's' cafe.
We would like to extend a sincere thank you to the following for their generosity in donating accommodation, enabling our film makers to attend the event: Rolle Quay Inn, The Old Vicarage, Inglenook Cottage in Instow, Royal and Fortescue Hotel, Coombe Farm Goodleigh and Brightlycott Cottage.
Over the next year we will be bringing you updates from our Down on the Farm film makers who will be 'out in the field' in north Devon creating a very special collection of short documentary films.
THE FILM MAKERS
Congratulations to our film makers!
Florence Browne from Cornwall
Holly Black & Joanne Barker from Bristol
James Cox from Devon
Linda Mason from Hampshire
Michael Balsdon from Devon
Joanna Ryan from Devon (edit - Jo joined the fold in July 2019)
The commissionees were selected by an independent panel of professionals, from the film/tv, heritage and environment industries, out of a field of over 40 applicants aged between 18 and 72
James - As political turmoil surrounding the Brexit result takes hold with cheaper, lower quality products set to be imported from abroad, affecting the future of British agriculture; farmer Wayne Copp is preparing to face Brexit and ready his children as they prepare to become the 5th generation to work his farm.
Linda - Rose Manning was born in 1945 and has been in farming all her life. Rose is the eldest daughter of 3 girls and she took the role of future farmer in the absence of her parents having a son. Lifelong Farmer will be told through memories of Rose, through informal conversations whilst she is working with the animals and in the kitchen.
Florence - The film will focus on the Eveleigh family's recently begun 'meat box' scheme, an enterprise which sees them take their own livestock from their farm on Exmoor to the local abattoir in Combe Martin and produce high-quality meat boxes which they can then sell. The focuses on the importance the family place on a small, local abattoir, as this is a crucial factor in the animals' welfare but is often overlooked by the general public.
Holly & Jo - All Down Farm’s produce is eaten within a 20 mile radius of the farm. By engaging with their wider community, market gardeners Olivia and Henry believe not only does this help to strengthen the resilience of the farm itself but also helps rebuild local food networks, links and relationships - links that were once at the core of rural farming communities.
Michael - The lambing season on Michael's family's farm. Focusing on Michael's Mother, Sister Mel and her 3 year old daughter, this inter-generational perspective exemplifies the importance of women in the continuation of farming life.
(edit July 2019) Jo - The film is about grazing sheep on Northam Burrows Country Park. It will focus on farmer Ronald Griffey who has grazed sheep there for over 40 years and the rewards and challenges this gives him. Northam Burrows is an unusual landscape rich in plants and wildlife. As common land, it has a long history of grazing rights. Ronald and his family have a strong connection with the burrows and grazing sheep there. Ronald’s father had grazing rights on the burrows, and Ronald’s son now helps him.
"Rose has been farming all her life and now even in her mid seventies she is still caring for the young cattle and supporting on the farm. I will tell Rose’s story through her daily routines on the farm and in the kitchen baking, as she prepares food and reminisces about her life. Lifelong Farmer will weave together archive material, intimate and personal recollections of being a woman in farming over many decades."
Community film making organisation North Devon Moving Image CIC (NDMI) is partnering with the Museum of Barnstaple and North Devon to share a collection of short films about farming heritage in north Devon.
NDMI is calling for film makers to apply for a £1,000 documentary short film commission, Down on the Farm which will produce six short films about farmers and farming in north Devon. The resulting films will be on show at the new social history gallery being created as part of the Museum's £1.8 million Long Bridge Extension.
Museum manager Alison Mills says "Farming is of course the foundation of life in North Devon, and of our wonderful landscapes, but the everyday aspects of this work are not well known to our increasingly urban populations. As working practices are changing and many farmers are leaving the industry now is the time to record our area’s practices and peculiarities to enable people learn about and engage with our local heritage."
Amanda McCormack, Creative Director of NDMI says “We work with local people to create, collect and share short films about north Devon and our projects give individuals and communities a voice whilst celebrating our local heritage.”
“An important part of NDMI’s remit is to support and nurture film making talent and Down on the Farm is our very first film commission. Thanks to our funders, each successful applicant will receive £1,000 to produce one film sharing the heritage and promoting the work of farmers and farming within the boundaries of North Devon’s Biosphere Reserve, including the coastal Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty.”
The selection panel, comprising members of the TV and film industries, as well as farming and environmental organisations, will be looking for the most engaging stories and fascinating characters with the spirit of north Devon at their heart. Applicants will need to demonstrate strong story telling skills, creative outlook and examples of previous work.
Amanda added “Our consultation for this project drew out plenty of farmers with great stories to tell, so if you are a film maker from outside the area we can put you in touch with willing subjects. We will also have local volunteers on hand to act as location managers and researchers if needed.”
For all the project and application information visit northdevonmovingimage.org.uk, email Amanda McCormack, Project Manager firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 01271 860610.
The closing date for applications is Wednesday 1 August 2018.
Keep up to date with all the latest news from NDMI Creative Director Amanda McCormack.
North Devon Moving Image CIC
Gareth Alvarez, Creative Director
North Devon Moving Image CIC is a Community Interest Company Limited by Guarantee
Community Interest Company No. 8737215
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