The stars of Kelvin’s Big Farming Adventure on sharing an honest account of their new life

Farming has become a way of life for former Emmerdale actor Kelvin Fletcher and his family.

By Joanne Knox
Monday, 17th January 2022, 1:34 pm

Tonight sees the first episode of a brand new show on BBC One, Kelvin’s Big Farming Adventure, following agri newbies Kelvin, his wife Liz, and their two young children Marnie and Milo, as they move to a 120-acre farm in the Peak District.

The show charts the family’s farming journey so far, as they get to grips with managing the land and tending to a variety of livestock.

And, the couple have revealed their family of four is soon to become six, with twins due later this spring!

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Programme Name: Kelvin's Big Farming Adventure - TX: n/a - Episode: Kelvin's Big Farming Adventure - ep 1 (No. 1) - Picture Shows: with Marnie. Kelvin Fletcher - (C) BBC Studios - Photographer: Jon Parker Lee

Taking to his Instagram page last week, Kelvin couldn’t hide his excitement ahead of tonight’s first episode.

He said the show will be informative, exciting and entertaining but, most importantly, it will be honest.

“It’s got to be honest, and we feel it is,” he told his followers.

“Hopefully it’s a true representation of what we’re facing as new farmers.”

Programme Name: Kelvin's Big Farming Adventure - TX: n/a - Episode: Kelvin's Big Farming Adventure - ep 2 (No. 2) - Picture Shows: and Liz with the kids. Kelvin Fletcher - (C) BBC Studios - Photographer: Jon Parker Lee

He said the family have been making a “relatively smooth success of things” and, while there have been a few struggles along the way, they are absolutely loving their new way of life.

Kelvin and Liz appeared on BBC Breakfast this morning to discuss their move to the farm.

“Moving was always on the cards, but moving to a farm was an absolute curveball,” Liz admitted.

A lack of farming knowledge made Liz hesitant to begin with, but after viewing the farm, the pair fell in love with it and believe it is ‘the best thing they have ever done’.

Programme Name: Kelvin's Big Farming Adventure - TX: n/a - Episode: Kelvin's Big Farming Adventure - generics (No. n/a) - Picture Shows: Kelvin Fletcher - (C) BBC Studios - Photographer: Jon Parker Lee

“I highly recommend it,” Liz added, “if anyone is thinking about doing it, just go for it because I can’t imagine any other life now.”

Kelvin said the new show is ‘how not to farm’ in many ways because they have taken on the responsibility as complete beginners.

“You’ve not got mum, dad, nan, grandad to turn to like a lot of farmers have, so it’s been a complete eye opener in many ways,” he stated.

“But, we’ve embraced the unknown and enjoyed the adventure.”

Programme Name: Kelvin's Big Farming Adventure - TX: n/a - Episode: Kelvin's Big Farming Adventure - ep 1 (No. 1) - Picture Shows: and Liz with kids outside the farmhouse Kelvin Fletcher - (C) BBC Studios - Photographer: Jon Parker Lee

As for his role in Emmerdale, where he played farmer Andy Sugden for many years, Kelvin said there haven’t been many transferable skills.

Playing a fictional character, he said he was “saying the lines” and concentrating on the scene.

When it comes to what animals on the farm are his favourites, he likened that to asking someone to choose their favourite child.

“I love them all,” he revealed.

“The sheep are amazing. We’ve got two breeds currently.

“Gilly [appearing on the show], who is amazing by the way, has a mixture of breeds.

“We just kept it simple with one breed initially and that’s what we’ve been doing as farmers.

“We’ve been picking breeds that are a little bit easier, might not yield as well commercially, but for us they’re a little bit easier to keep, they’re a little bit easier to maintain and that’s been key for us.”

Looking ahead to their new arrivals, Kelvin said: “Come May, we’ll be delivering lambs for the first time, I’m not going to be delivering babies, but it’s going to be a busy time!”

Their children Milo (3) and Marnie (5) have been fully embracing their new life on the farm.

Initially, Kelvin and Liz were a little bit worried about how they would adapt, but they are incredibly proud of how the children have embraced life on the farm.

Liz stated: “Marnie knows all the responsibilities, she knows what needs doing, she knows this is a job now.

“We’ve got all these animals that we have to look after and even Milo, he’s three years old and he’s doing all the sheep whistling, getting them into the fields, and what they’re learning, that’s probably the proudest moment – seeing what they do and seeing them grow into this life.”

She added: “We’re obsessed with all those farming programmes, we absolutely love them.

“There’s something about children being at nature and learning about life and you know, Marnie is learning about life and death and, unfortunately, lambs do die, sheep do die quite easily and she’ll see them and she’ll point them out and she knows to let you know.

“She’s not scared by it she just knows that this is a way of life now.”

Looking to the future, Kelvin said he ‘thinks this is it’ for the family.

“I’ve just become absolutely obsessed,” he continued.

“It’s just a way of life.

“It’s very much being outdoors, not necessarily farming, just that simple living.

“It’s the little things, the little moments where your present.

“Yes we’re still both ambitious actors and want to do other things, but when we’re at home working together, mucking the pigs out, whatever it might be, with the kids, it’s just the most amazing life.

“And so many people have reached out and said, ‘that’s something I’ve wanted to do’, or ‘we’re currently doing it’, so they absolutely get it and understand.

“Just being out there, dare I say it, at one with nature, it’s just been incredible.”

You can catch the first episode of Kelvin’s Big Farming Adventure tonight (Monday) on BBC One from 8.30pm to 9pm.

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