Situated on the Wiltshire Somerset border in the lush Pewsey Vale and extending to the chalk downlands above the valley, Jonny and Rachael Rider are the third generation of the Rider family to be rotational grazing on these extensive organic pastures, rich with a mix of grasses, herbs, legumes and wild flowers. In 1954, Jonny’s grandfather brought his herd of dairy cows down from Shropshire on the train. Jonny and Rachael (with help from their four children) now look after a herd of 400 dairy cows, milking them once each day.
The diversity of breeds includes Jersey, Red Poll, Ayrshire and Montbeliarde. Horton House is a tranquil, low stress environment where the cows are in exemplary health. Antibiotic usage has been virtually zero for the last 10 years and some of the cows at Horton are still giving milk and having a calf at 18 years old. The young dairy calves are nurtured and stay either with their mother cows or join up with other retired cows on the farm to suckle naturally for the first 8-10 months before weaning.
The farm is certified organic and Pasture for Life.