Fri. Feb 23rd, 2024

The Milking Parlour: In Bristol from April 21st – 25th

The Milking Parlour
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The Milking Parlour


From 21-25 April Nessie Reid will be living with two pure-bred Guernsey cows in the centre of Bristol for 4 nights and 5 days.

Free to all, this immersive exhibition will explore the values and connections we hold towards our food and farming system here in the UK.

26,500 dairy farms existed in the UK in 2001; by 2011 there were 14,700. In 1950 there were a massive 196,000 dairy farms, which means that over the past 60 years, 92.5% of them have disappeared. Milk, once hailed as a superfood providing 34% of our RDA of protein, is now so undervalued that it is often cheaper to buy than bottled water. More and more the next generation are turning away from dairy farming because they simply cannot afford to make ends meet.

Nessie will construct a temporary milking parlour and farming discussion forum in the Harbourside’s Anchor Square. As part of the show there will be a live programme of daily talks and milking sessions, opportunities to hear the stories of, and ask questions to, dairy farmers as well as a variety of workshops for all ages.

Watch the film by clicking here, and for more information, visit The Milking Parlour website.

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2 thoughts on “The Milking Parlour: In Bristol from April 21st – 25th”
  1. What a wonderful initiative. My Mother was a dairy farmer’s daughter and the farm where she was born is still owned and run today by my family (my Mum’s brother and my cousins). I have many, many happy memories of spending time down on the farm and that was back in the days when they also kept sheep too. I don’t envy my family running it as a business nowadays. Price cutting, cheap imports, constant threat of TB which would mean the whole herd would have to be culled and more … not including the early mornings and having to be on hand all the time! I don’t know the half of it! I know it would be a tragedy if they stopped doing it though!

  2. Just been down to Anchor Square (Sun/24/Apr/2016) to see what all the hoo-ha is about. I think the animal protection/vegan pressure groups often do a great job but on this occasion they’ve ended up with muck on their faces; all their hype about distressed animals and exploitation is a load of nonsense (but largely thanks to them this exhibition has received national coverage). After 2 nights living next to a nightclub the cows were completely unfazed – Nessie said that she and her night-shift team, who sleep in the marquee with the cows, were the only ones who were distressed having hardly got any sleep. And from my observations it wasn’t just the kids who loved stroking the cows and seeing them being milked – the parents loved it too and asked lots of interesting questions. I spoke to one of the farmers there and he said what with all the pampering and mollycoddling these night-clubbing cows have been getting they won’t want to go back to the farm! As far as I am concerned, if this event has helped make people think a bit more about the food they eat, where it comes from and what it takes to produce it then it has been well worthwhile. Well done Nessie.

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