The Team
The Boss
Chiltern Lamb is owned and run by Tracy Betteridge, known to friends as Bill, but no one can remember why, not even her! Bill has lived in the Henley area for over 20 years and in the last ten years has run her own grounds maintenance and gardening business. During this time she has kept a small number of sheep, supplying jointed whole and half lambs for the freezer. In recent years, through the combination of securing more grazing and having a collie dog to help her manage larger numbers, she has been able to increase the number of sheep she is able to run and thereby increase the amount of lamb she is able to offer for sale. Hence, Chiltern Lamb was born.
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Bill is originally from Warwickshire, where she grew up on the sheep farm where her father was shepherd to 600 ewes. From an early age, Bill helped her Dad with the sheep, hand-feeding orphaned lambs and, later on, helping with all general sheep keeping duties at weekends and during school holidays. Raising sheep is in Bill’s genes.
 
Bill has extensive experience in both sheep and horse management and has HNDs in Animal Management, and Thoroughbred Stud and Land Management. She has been responsible for managing 600 ewes on a 2000 acre farm and run a 600 sow free-range pig unit.
 
Bill is passionate about the welfare of every one of her sheep and can recognise every individual of the 230 sheep she currently runs (ewes and lambs). She uses a small abattoir where the lambs typically wait less than 10 minutes and certainly not more than 30 minutes before going through the system.
 
Bill believes that we should know where our meat comes from and that we should eat less, but better quality meat.  Her focus is on the preservation of rare breeds of sheep and she currently had five different breeds – Jacob, Herdwick, Balwen, Badgerface-Torddu and Black Welsh  currently producing meat for sale. She also has Soay, Devon and Cornwall Longwool and Portland in small numbers which she is gradually building on.
 
The Girls
 

Skye and Dusk are Bill’s two collies. They make running over 200 sheep singled handed possible. Skye is four and Dusk is two years old. Both are involved in sheep dog trialling as well as being work dogs helping to manage the sheep. They work differently from each other and have different skills. Skye will never let a sheep get away from her  and works well in close situations, being very precise in putting individual sheep in the right place, while Dusk is very happy to work at distance moving large numbers of sheep in an unhurried and collected way.

At home, they live with Bill in the house and are her constant companions.  Nothing is too good for the girls.
 
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Skye
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Dusk
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Dusk at a training event
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Skye moving sheep

 
 
The Boys
Chiltern Lamb currently has four working rams – Chris (Jacob), Barry (Balwen), Peter (Jacob), Garant (Badgerface- Torddu) and Harry (Herdwick).

Barry is the most experienced, since 2013 will be his third tupping season. Chris is now two years old, Peter is one, Harry 18 months and Garant is the baby at 8 months so 2013 will be his first year at tup. All the boys  except for Harry are registered pedigree rams.

Tupping services are available on a limited basis to local flocks. Enquire, if interested and, if possible, we will try to fulfil your requirements
Email
info@chilternlamb.co.uk   Phone 07721462672

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Chris Jacob
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Barry Balwen

The Ladies
We have 120 breeding ewes across the seven breeds we currently own. For a few of those we have had longest, we have four generations of ewe – mum, daughter, granddaughter and great granddaughter. We put our ewes to the rams in early November for a mid-March to mid-April lambing period. A ewe will typically be bred until it is around eight years old, but the decision whether to put a ewe to tup depends on her condition and whether she will have a safe pregnancy and good delivery.  The health of our ewes is of primary importance  to us. Read more about our sheep here .

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