Matt Baker swaps TV career for full-time farming after mum trampled by sheep
Matt Baker has opened up on his decision to return to farming full-time after his mother was trampled by sheep.
The 43-year-old Countryfile presenter moved back to the family farm in the Durham Dales with wife Nicola and their two children, Molly, 11, and Luke, 13, after his 65-year-old mum Janice was injured in a farming accident in July last year.
Baker told the Radio Times: “Mum runs the show up there. She was so determined to keep going and passionate about what she does. In the end, it was the sheep that had to say: ‘Look, it’s game over’.
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“Mum wanted to keep farming sheep, so we thought, let’s find some that are better suited. And let’s look at the infrastructure, so Mum and Dad can continue living in the place they love so much.”
The former host of The One Show – who has filmed his family's change in lifestyle for More4 series Matt Baker: Our Farm in the Dales – admitted it was very hard to see his mother in such a fragile state.
He said: “I’ve never felt the need to step in the way I did after the accident. The last thing you want is to see your parents struggling, and Mum was very vulnerable.
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“The hardest part for me was filming her in that situation. I’ve never seen her like that.”
But Baker has accepted that his parents – Janice and Mike, 77 – are now in a position where they need him to care for them. And he hopes one day his own children will in turn take over the farm.
He said: “It comes to a point where you start looking after your parents like they looked after you.
“Farming is such a generational thing anyway and the changes we were making to help mum and dad will be there for my children in the future.”
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And former Blue Peter's Baker's mother Janice said that despite his successful TV career, his decision to return to the farm is what has made her most proud.
She said: “You have to be sensible and, while we’re so proud of him and everything he’s done, I am particularly proud of him for this, because they’ve come back and taken care of us.”
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