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Meet our Farm Apprentice, Holly


It's about time we introduce Holly, our Farm Apprentice, and of course, her Border Collie, Tweed.

Holly is 19 and has been involved at Whirlow since she started volunteering in the animal handling barn (as it was known then), when she was 16. The issues in 2020 meant this stopped but she returned to help with lambing which still had to continue despite a global pandemic! She doesn’t come from a farming background, and it was her time volunteering at Whirlow which made her want to get into farming.

Holly completed her A-Levels in summer 2022, and in September she started her apprenticeship at Whirlow; Level 3 Livestock Unit Technician which she is due to complete in February 2024.

A Level 3 Apprenticeship means the individual should be able to run an area (or enterprise) of a farm. Holly is specialising in sheep and will be able to run this area when she has completed her time at Whirlow. After this, she plans to experience more farms and larger commercial lambing enterprises and as well as gaining more experience with other animals.

Holly said “my favourite thing about Whirlow is that every day if different. I love that when you’re working in the fields, the public will stop and ask about the animals and what you’re doing with them. Lambing is my favourite time, but I also really love working with the cows.”

Her dream is to become a Farm Manager or have her own farming business.

Facts about Holly:

She is a vegetarian (but she does eat chicken and has tried Whirlow’s lamb, but only Whirlow’s!)

Her favourite animal at Whirlow is Rolo the bull

Tweed also loves sheep but isn’t keen on cows!

Farm Manager, Ash Malia, said “Providing apprenticeships at Whirlow means we can give youngsters a chance of getting on the agricultural ladder who would otherwise not have a chance. Being on the edge of a city but still rural means we’re reachable by public transport and therefore not excluding those who don’t have their own transport.”

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