There are some things money cannot buy; so when you are an Archers fan like my wife, Victoria and the Archers production team contact you to see if your farm could host a writers team building day, not all the gifts in the world could have pleased her as much.
Fifteen of them came on an idyllic summer’s day. The view from Warren Farm under the archway and beyond to the Lickey Hills was sublime. The producer and agricultural advisor stayed for bed and breakfast and our two dogs Parry and Brock entertained them whilst the other writers arrived after breakfast. I found it interesting from an agricultural point of view and understand the slant on the agricultural story lines much better. It is they exclaimed a ‘dynastic drama’. Well they’ll have to do some quick changes to the plot if the dynasty of Brookfield is to stay in-tact.
Any way back to the day; they had a trailer ride round Warren Farm, it is the first tour of the whole farm for five years that we risked going down through the wood to Lower Brockhampton. The countryside was so beautiful whatever the story line. Lunch was farmhouse soup from our veg patch followed inevitably by crumble and custard. They sat outside the whole day in glorious sunshine. I actually think Tor (Victoria) would have paid them to come here!
A few day after the visit we were contacted by email from the Archer’s sound engineer. She wanted one of us to do some recording for an archer’s episode coming up soon. Life could not get much better for Victoria; the thought that one of us might actually be on the Archers. The sound engineer said she would send us through the scene and we could let her know what we thought. The episode in question was when Jill was sitting at the kitchen table and Biff the old dog whined at Jill and then went and sat down by the aga.
Yes, you’ve guessed it they only wanted Brock our sheepdog, he was to be the Archer’s star. When the girl game she spent an hour with both our dogs. Parry the old lab having loads of treats and making ‘old dog flopping on the floor’ sounds and Brock whining to bite the fluffy sound microphone.
We listened like proud parents to the episode when it was broadcast, how funny to have our dog on the radio. Life at Warren Farm is rather like a ‘dynastic drama’, it certainly is never dull.