News & Blog

Tune for the Blood in Sheffield Doc/fest Videotheque

2012-06-13 00:00:00

I'm off to Sheffield to the Doc/fest.  'Tune for the Blood' has been chosen for Videotheque.  I'm sure you're not supposed to admit this, but I really hate having to market and promote my own film - so that bit, I'm not looking forward to.  However, the festival has great films, loads of people, interesting sessions and parties.  I haven't been to the festival in many years, so I'm really looking forward to it...and hopefully will interest some people in 'Tune for the Blood'.

At the Hay Festival: Onstage and up in the hills

2012-06-06 00:00:00

                                                            Relaxing on the Green Room Terrace at Hay before the 'Tune for the Blood' screening: Heather, Russ,
                                                                                                      Jono, Christine with Fay on the extreme right

I often get nervous before a big screening of 'Tune for the Blood', not because I'm worried about getting up in front of an audience and speaking, but because I'm worried about getting up in front of rows of empty seats.  Luckily that wasn't the case at the Hay Festival on Friday night.

In the afternoon, I had spoken to Jono Rogers, one of the young farmers in the film.  He was in the middle of sileaging and still had the milking to do and wasn't sure he would make it to the beginning of the event.   But he did - along with Russell Carrington, Fay Thomas, and Christine Hope who all appeared on the panel for the Q&A.  We were very fortunate to have Heather Gorringe of Wiggly Wigglers, chairing the event.

I always wish the Q&A sessions could last longer. The film raises questions and issues which the panel very capably address and it would be great to make it possible for them to do so at length.

Here are some photographs which cover the time before the actual screening but as I was onstage for the Q&A, I couldn't take any pictures -- and my designated photographer was waylaid.




                                                                         The queue begins to form outside the Big Tent for the screening of 'Tune for the Blood'




And reactions:


'My husband and I have just seen the film at the Hay Festival - it's fantastic!  Great idea, great topic, great people, great photography -

lots of food for thought, if people can be persuaded to do the thinking!  It deserves to get plenty of recognition and loads of awards.'


'We really enjoyed your film. The camera work was fantastic and the whole theme gave food for thought..not enough young entrants

into the business, too much red tape and always big risk from the weather, disease, market pressures etc. Well done!

A great presentation!'

And the Tune for the Blood Walk the next day...


The Tune for the Blood walk up into the stunning uplands landscape that is part of Graham Richards' story was held the next morning.  The day dawned wet and grey and as I drove to Bull's Head at Craswall where we were meeting, the mist closed in. 


Twenty people signed up for the walk.  Four people showed up.  They were however, a fine four, and with Nic Howes, our fearless leader we set off under the dripping leaves with the air full of summer scents and into the mist not unlike that atmospheric scene of 'The Gathering' in the film.



                                                                              At the parting gate during The Gathering in Tune for the Blood


                                                                                               Fording the stream in the valley just below the parting gate 


                                                                                                 One of the fine bulls on Graham Richards' farm



                                                 Nic Howes holds the gate open on the old track between the parting gate and Bull's Head Pub

After three hours of a fascinating walk in very good company, we arrived back at the Bull's Head, soaked but happy, and dried out by the roaring woodstove with a glass of Butty Bach. 

Many thanks to the Richards family for letting us take the short cut across the Abbey Farm!!

New milking parlour

2012-05-26 00:00:00

I visited Jono Rogers recently and he was pretty excited with the progress that was being made with the installation of a new milking parlour.  If you've seen the film, you will know that the old parlour was 30 years old and he was weighing up the options for a new one.  A new parlour with 'all the bells and whistles' was going to cost £450,000 - a hefty investment.  He has worked out a compromise and is pretty pleased with it.

                                                    Jono with his niece Daisy with the new parlour being built in the background


                                                                And here is one of Jono's rather pretty heifers posing

Tune for the Blood Hay Festival guided walk

2012-05-09 00:00:00


This is an atmospheric 3 mile walk to go with the Hay Festival screening of Tune for the Blood through a beautiful valley close to the border between England and Wales. The walk starts and finishes at the isolated Bull's Head inn and takes in the tiny church at Craswall, Abbey Farm home to Graham Richards in Tune for the Blood (as well as the the wonderful archive film  Real Life on the Black Hill) and the romantic ruins of Craswall Priory and its associated fishpond dam. The walk is overlooked by the steep north face of the Black Hill, setting of the feature film On the Black Hill.

It will follow the lane up from Abbey Farm and down to the parting gate scene of The Gathering which provides such a rich and atmospheric sequence in the film. 

The walk will be led by accredited mountain guide, Nic Howes, who has led numerous walks in this area and has a wide knowledge of its history and geography.

Tune For the Blood Walk  Saturday June 2,  10:00am to 1:00pm  Meet at Bull's Head Pub, Craswall HR2 0PN

Drinks may be available at the Bull's Head or contact them directly to book your food in advance.  5 miles, mainly on footpaths; walking boots and waterproof clothing recommended.

Organised in association with Cantilupe Projects CIC

To book the walk click here.

To book the screening click here.

We also recommend a great lunch a White Haywood Farm which is just a short drive or a 20 minute walk down road towards Longtown.  Pre-booking essential.

Here's a preview of the landscape you will encounter - although it won't be covered in snow and there will leaves on the trees.


                                           Sheep on Abbey Farm with Hay Bluff in the background



                                                          Cat's Back Ridge which leads on to the Black Hill


                                                          Graham Richards and dogs taking the sheep back out onto the hills

Great night in the barn for Borderlines in May screening

2012-05-07 00:00:00

Saturday night was cold outside, but inside Lyde Court Barn it was warm and merry. More than 60 people came to the pop-up restaurant and cinemas laid on by Gary at Lyde Court and Naomi and Jo from Borderlines in May - and Jackie from Flicks in the Sticks, who did a sterling job of projecting Tune for the Blood.  Elliot Broadbent-Jones whose band, Riot Riot did the track for the opening of the film was also there. Here is a photo in the darkness as we all watch the film.  The screen was put up in in the barn where there was a natural rake to the floor so we could get a great eyeline to the screen.  I will put a few more pics up later.

                                    Onscreen - Graham Richards' father, Colin, at the parting gate during the October Gathering of sheep from Black Hill
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