I have been involved in two television programs featuring the New Forest.
A Wild Autumn Day – BBC 2
A wonderful program featuring the New Forest in autumn. Local people talk about their love of the forest at this special time of year, including myself giving an artists perspective.
A Wild Autumn Day – Program Details
“A look at the wildlife in the New Forest on an early autumn day. Red deer stags fight for a stake in the future while adders and common lizards face their last chance to find a meal before winter. And it’s also time for one of Britain’s answer to the Wild West, when local people saddle up and round up the forest’s ponies for their once-a-year health check.”
The New Forest – Meridian TV
The idea behind the shoot was to follow a horse portrait commission from beginning to end. Natalie a friend and previous customer, was waiting for a painting of her new horse ‘Jack’, so was the obvious choice as the customer.
A few photos taken during the filming
The New Forest – Program Details
Series Producer – Hannah Dawes Executive Producer – Jonathan Marland
To many The New Forest is simply a place of great natural beauty and thousands of tourists flock to the area every summer. It’s somewhere to walk, somewhere to cycle, somewhere to relax.
But in this eight part series we meet the real people of the New Forest, the people who have lived and worked on the land for generations. Commoners, the forest farmers with rights to graze their animals on the open heathland. Agisters, who are employed by the Verderers to look after the welfare of the livestock on the forest and Verderer’s, those who are elected to sit on the ancient Verderer’s Court.
We also visit the Keepers, who are employed by the Forestry Commission to control pests, manage the deer and generally conserve the wildlife within the forest. We see the likes of Ian Young, Maurice Holland and Martin Noble in action, timber cutting to create deer lawns, raptor ringing, bat monitoring and badger watching.
The New Forest and its villages are steeped in tradition, and Beaulieu is no exception. As owner of the Beaulieu Estate, Lord Montagu is entitled to fish the Beaulieu River that flows through the village. Each year Lord M watches as his staff use the traditional method of Seine net fishing to sweep the river bed for Sea trout, and we were there to see the catch!
With over 3,000 ponies turned out onto the forest, local equine vets Chris Pearce and Martin Peaty have their work cut out for them. Every day brings a new challenge from operating on a heavy horse with breathing difficulties to conducting a bit of horse dentistry!
The people of the New Forest are proud of their heritage and have fought hard to maintain their way of life. At the height of the summer they come together to celebrate country living and hold ‘The New Forest Show’, a three day agricultural and equestrian event, open to the public. With over 100,000 thousand visitors each year, the show attracts people from far and wide to be educated and entertained. From ferret racing to pole climbing, it has it all!