IT has been a rather dull, damp and breezy week, with a noticeable fall in temperature on the last day. This change in the weather brought with it a flurry of snow, which was far more widespread over other parts of the country, with the threat of more to come.

At the beginning of the week Kevin managed to plant his last field of winter wheat, so hopefully conditions will not become to unfavourable and the crop will manage to germinate and establish during the next few weeks.

However, most of Kevin's work has been with the sheep. Sometimes with Richard's or Melissa's help he has been moving more sheep on and off of Manor Farm. One flock has been moved to a fresh field of grass after erecting sheep fencing around the perimeter. Then the first flock of wethers (castrated ram lambs) to arrive on Manor Farm were gathered with the help of Wisper, Fly and Smudge, Kevin's three sheepdogs, before being penned in a mobile race in the field.

One by one Kevin was able to assess if any were finished ready to go to the abattoir. He managed to find 48 which he separated into anther holding pen before they were taken back to Stowell Farm.

At the same time the health of each wether was checked and any needing remedial treatment, such as foot trimming were treated. The lambs not yet ready to market were then moved to a another fresh field of grass with sheep fencing around it and some more growing wethers brought from Stowell Farm to join them.

Here on Manor Farm the straw-bedded pens used for cows with calves or as isolation areas for unwell (eg, lame cows) has been mucked out, cleaned and bedded up with fresh straw. A large straw-bedded barn used to house our 15-month-old dairy heifers and part as a pre-natal area for our heavily pregnant cows has also been mucked out and the manure taken to a heap in one of our arable fields. This manure will be spread over the field next year, before it is ploughed into the soil, adding valuable organic matter and nutrients.

David, our nutritionist, called mid-week to collect figures for the month's dairy costings. Then he will work out how much it is costing us to produce a litre of milk, so that we can see how our business is functioning and make adjustments if necessary. While David was here we weighed some of our young calves and 15-month-old heifers to check on their growth.

Recently Richard and I attended the Wiltshire Annual Open NFU meeting, held in Market Lavington. This year it took the form of a conference with four speakers giving their views on how leaving the EU may affect their businesses in the future.

The speakers were David Butler, farming dairy, beef and arable in the Pewsey Vale, which sits within the North Wessex Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, therefore David is at present in a higher level environmental stewardship scheme. He also grows beans for human consumption.

The second speaker was Patrick Hook, a poultry farmer who breeds, rears and grows chicks, employing 2,000 people in his farming operations.

The third speaker was David Homer, who is a dairy farmer supplying Waitrose, who told us that 50 per cent of the milk produced in the EU is processed by Muller and Arla.

The fourth speaker was dairy farmer Guy Lewis, farming near Calne and supplying Cadbury. Guy also works for a farm machinery supplier. The presentations were all very interesting with a focus on future labour supply, efficiency, trade and what may replace the basic payment scheme in the years to come.

To round up this week I must tell you that I have been delighted to see a variety of birds feasting on the fallen apples in our garden, including a beautiful green woodpecker, fieldfares and blackbirds.