Farming lives, past and present
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Oxfordshire Farmers immortalised at Centre for Oxfordshire Studies
Ten Oxfordshire farmers were immortalised in the archives of Oxfordshire County Council's Centre for Oxfordshire Studies when documentation and audio recordings of interviews with them were presented to the Head of the Centre on the morning of Tuesday 25 November 2003.
Jane Bowler [featured right in photograph], one of the farmers interviewed for the project, presented the recordings and documentation to Dr Malcolm Graham at a photo-call outside the Centre for Oxfordshire Studies in Oxford. She said 'Hearing about the other farmers interviewed, particularly those who are or were pig farmers then I count myself lucky in some respects. Other pig farmers selling into the national or international commodity markets, like we used to, have gone to the wall. I think that what we've done, in selling directly to the public, locally, at our farm shop, through farmers markets and other places is the only reason why we've still farming. Of course it's only with hindsight that you see these things.'
Dr Malcolm Graham
[featured left in photograph],
Head of the Centre for Oxfordshire Studies who received the project materials said
'Oxfordshire has always been a rural county in which farmers and farming have played a vital role. For studies of agriculture in the past we generally have to rely on printed or manuscript sources, often quite detached from the people who actually worked the land. These interviews come straight from the horse's mouth, from farmers grappling with the realities of farming today, and we are therefore delighted to add them to the County Council's Oral History Archive. I'd like to say a big thank you to everyone involved in creating this fantastic time capsule.'
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