With us the grass is greener
My name is Robert, I am a fourth generation dairy farmer based in the beautiful south west of Scotland. Littleton is located in the Fleet Valley national scenic area, an area of outstanding natural beauty.
My great grandfather took on the tenancy at Littleton in 1870. Then in 1940 my grandfather bought Littleton from the local estate during the war. Back in those days we had 23 cows and they were all milked by hand.
In 1972 my mother and father took over the farm from my grandparents. The farm was a mixed livestock farm which had suckler cows, sheep and dairy cows.
Over the last 10 years the farm has grown in size and has seen some major investment and has started to specialise in dairy farming.
Today we milk 950 cows through a state of the art dairy unit, so thankfully milking time is a a bit quicker than when my grandfather started.
Our focus is on the animal's health and well being, believing that peak yields are only achieved through working with nature, not against it.
We are a family farm and this structure is what we believe has helped us through the good and bad times. Farming for us is a 24 hour, seven days a week lifestyle where every member of the family helps out. Whether it be feeding calves at dawn with my mother or feeding pet lambs at dusk with my five year old daughter, our dedicated principles stand firm.
We want to evolve with the times, but we also want to preserve something that we are so immensely proud of, our love of farming and in turn the countryside.
At Littleton I believe we can be both a large scale milk producer with a positive enviromental impact.
Our family farm since 1870
On the left is a picture from 1965 of the steading at Littleton Farm. At this time it was my grandparents running the farm with roughly 5 employees 100 cows and 200 sheep. Today we have a dedicated team of 28 looking after our cows17-18 hours a day.
We are no longer producing cheese, currently all our liquid milk is supplied to Muller for butter, yoghurt and drinking milk, which you could find on the shelf in your local supermarket.
Pictured below driving the red combine is my father Robert Dodds, and pictured on the right is my mother Elizabeth Dodds on the tractor bailing with my grandfather Jack Armstrong watching on.