In the 1970’s cattle raised for meat were grazing in the fields, as were about 1,000
sheep. The cattle disappeared during the 1970’s and their grazing land was drained and ploughed using government subsidies.
In the 1990’s the sheep also went. Now, apart from a handful of cattle or a flock of sheep grazing on otherwise unused
permanent pasture close to the village, no farm animals can be seen.
crops grown are the staple wheat, and two break crops, often peas and oilseed rape, depending on the government subsidies
available. Some years barley is grown.
Another feature of the landscape
is the plantations of trees established in the 1970’s and since. These are nothing like the ancient woodland still surviving
in small patches in local parishes. It is mainly fir, with some broadleaf trees. On the clay land these are doing well, though
the fir is better established than the broadleaf. On the limestone, however, success is more patchy. The limestone is not
suitable for oak or beech. Ash does better, being shallow rooted, and sycamore grows robustly anywhere. Sycamore would not
have formed part of ancient woodland having been introduced to Britain in the last 500 years.