Our Farm in the Dales: Matt Baker comforts his mother
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Matt Baker has revealed how his parents have been coping with their newfound celebrity status after starring in the first series of Our Farm in the Dales. The former One Show presenter moved back up north to help his parents manage their sheep farm, documenting their day-to-day life for the Channel 4 series. Reflecting on the show, Matt unveiled his mother Janice found filming “tough” after breaking her leg in a farming accident.
After a decade of presenting The One Show, Matt realised it was time to spend more time with his family in County Durham.
After his mother Janice injured herself when tending to her sheep, the BBC host’s exit proved extremely timely and led to him stepping into running the family farm.
Janice, 77, broke her leg when her sheep knocked her off her feet and trampled on her.
Matt returned home with his wife Nicola and their children to help his father Mike run the farm, in the run-up to the crucial lambing season.
The first series of Our Farm in the Dales ended up breaking viewing records on More4.
Speaking about his parents’ fame following the show’s success, Matt said they have both gotten used to being recognised in public.
He explained: “Mum went to a local show to show the chickens and she said, ‘Matthew, I had no idea! I couldn’t understand why people were looking at me, then coming up and asking about my leg’.
“The first series was tough for mum after her injury; she’s very stoic but she’s really enjoyed being more involved this time.”
Now busy filming more episodes, the second series of Our Farm In The Dales has landed.
The wholesome show has also been commissioned for a third series and a Christmas special.
Matt returned home last July with his wife Nicola and children Luke, now 14, and Molly, 12, to help his parents on the 100-acre hill farm in the Durham Dales in the run-up to lambing season while Janice recovered from surgery after being trampled.
He made the farm more manageable, including buying smaller sheep, and came up with the idea of documenting the journey, the first for his own production company.
Matt explained: “I never really thought I’d put my family on TV but the honest truth is I would never have done a farm series unless I was 100 per cent in control. And that’s what it was.”
Matt has credited Nicola, a former physiotherapist, for helping get Janice on her feet after knee replacement surgery.
With hospital appointments scarce in lockdown, she was able to give her exercises and treat her.
Recalling her accident, Janice said: “Having my accident has really been quite an eye-opener I think for everybody.”
“I’ve always had a young outlook on life,” Janice added.
“And pride myself on being fit and healthy and then something like this happens and we begin to feel, ‘Oh, right I’m a bit vulnerable’.”
She continued: “It does make you reassess and make you think, ‘Okay, where are we going to go from here?’.
Matt Baker: Our Farm in the Dales is available to watch on All 4.
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