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Country Smallholding - - News - Si­mon McEwan, Editor

Two sto­ries to share

What is the most ful­fill­ing thing about small­hold­ing? This is a ques­tion we posed to Ali­cia Miller, who hails orig­i­nally from Cal­i­for­nia’s Bay area but now runs a small­hold­ing in deep­est Wales with her hus­band Nathan. Ali­cia’s re­sponse (pages 7-10) is fas­ci­nat­ing, and con­veys the quin­tes­sence of ‘the good life’ in our mod­ern world. Ali­cia re­flects on the as­saults on the planet’s eco sys­tem, and how it has be­come cen­tral to their lives to re­spond by cre­at­ing as sus­tain­able a life­style as pos­si­ble. “Be­ing a lit­tle part of mak­ing agri­cul­ture more sus­tain­able in our own lit­tle cor­ner of the world may not seem like much but, to us, it’s ev­ery­thing,” she says. “That’s what keep us go­ing. That’s what gets us up in the morn­ing and out on the land.”

An­other cou­ple, Holly Carter and An­drei Sz­er­ard, also re­flect on their good life af­ter aban­don­ing ca­reers as bar­ris­ters in Lon­don and buy­ing a small­hold­ing in Mid Devon. They made the leap four years ago and, on pages 19-23, they de­scribe what has hap­pened since. “We are hap­pier and more re­laxed and more alive than we have ever been,” they say. “We have en­dured the sad­dest and most chal­leng­ing events of our lives whilst liv­ing here, and we have glo­ried in the most heart­en­ing and joy­ous days of our lives too.”

We are pleased to share these two sto­ries with other small­hold­ers, and hope they pro­vide both in­spi­ra­tion and en­cour­age­ment as we face the chal­lenges of an­other year on the land.

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