The lockdowns and the pandemic have got a lot of people thinking about escaping the rat race and moving to the country – including actor and Strictly Come Dancing winner Kelvin Fletcher.
However, while some people have been wondering whether working from home now means they don’t have to be within easy commuting distance of the office, Kelvin has decided to combine the move with a career change.
Along with his wife Liz, he’s bought a 120-acre farm on the edge of the Peak District National Park, which they plan to bring back to its former working glory.
As anyone who watched last year’s streaming hit Clarkson’s Farm, which followed Jeremy Clarkson as he took on a similar endeavour, will know, making a farm pay is far from easy.
Yet some viewers might think that Kelvin has a bit of a head start on the former Top Gear presenter.
That’s because the actor first found fame on Emmerdale – he joined the cast as Andy Sugden when he was just 12 and stayed for 20 years.
And yes, his character was a farmer.
So, you might think that Kelvin has picked up a few things just by osmosis, but it turns out that’s not the case.
When he announced the new series Kelvin’s Big Farming Adventure on Instagram, he revealed: “We have literally jumped in at the deep end and bought a farm!
“A reluctant wife, two crazy kids and a husband with knowledge of farming you could write on the back of a stamp!
“What could possibly go wrong?!”
Luckily, Kelvin has an impressive track record when it comes to trying new things.
Alongside acting, he’s also had a career as a racing driver.
Then in 2019, when Made in Chelsea regular Jamie Laing injured his foot prior to the start of the series, Kelvin was drafted in as a replacement on Strictly Come Dancing, and emerged as a favourite in the very first live show when he wowed the audience and judges alike with a samba.
He went on to lift the glitterball trophy with his partner Oti Mabuse.
However, it will take more than impressive hip action to turn around the fortunes of his farm, as this first episode makes clear.
It finds Kelvin and Liz a month into their adventure and facing an ever-increasing list of jobs, as well as mounting stress levels.
Fortunately for them, they do have a no-nonsense next-door neighbour, Gilly, who is prepared to give them some advice.
So, before they invest in their own livestock, the couple decide to get some hands-on experience by caring for Gilly’s sheep.
They are soon confronted with the harsh realities of caring for animals as Kelvin is greeted with the sight of a sheep’s maggot-infested foot.
Some viewers won’t be surprised that he finds it a little too much, but is it enough to make him question whether he’s really cut out for this farming life?
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