Our Yorkshire Farm mum Amanda Owen's modelling career before TV fame


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Fans of Our Yorkshire Farm’s know Amanda Owen best for her farmer life, but she used to lead a far more glamorous lifestyle.

The Channel 5 star swapped strutting down catwalks and posing in studios for standing outside in the rain and shovelling animal poo.

But Amanda would not have it any other way as she loves running the Ravenseat Farm in Upper Swaledale.

The shepherdess appears on the show with her husband Clive Owen and their nine kids.

Before she started looking after 1,000 sheep, 40 cows, six dogs and four ponies, Amanda tried to break into the world of modelling.

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Amanda Owen Huddersfield-born Yorkshire Shepherdess
Amanda Owen Huddersfield-born Yorkshire Shepherdess

Having grown up in Huddersfield, 6ft 2ins tall Amanda had aspirations of following in her mother’s footsteps and becoming a model, but the reality of the profession didn’t quite live up to the dream.

“When you think you’re going to be a model in like Vogue, Cosmopolitan, but actually then you end up doing knitting catalogues and things like,” she explained on the Channel 5 show.

Admitting it was not quite what she realised, Amanda added: “It was cardigans, floral, Prince Diana 1980. No thank you.”

Amanda had no family background in farming but was inspired to get outdoors when she found a hill shepherd book in the library full of photos of beautiful landscapes and animals.

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She explained: “It was the pictures, it was the landscape, it was the people — everything in that book just appealed to me.

“It wasn’t glossing over the hard side, it was very real and very gritty and atmospheric but it was just the thought of working outdoors and actually doing something, having a physical job where you were out there feeling the elements — windburn, sunburn, rained on, all the rest of it — sounded like a good idea back then.”

Amanda quickly realised that being at one with nature was her calling so she turned her back on modelling.

It was during her early days as a 21-year-old trainee shepherdess where Amanda met future husband Clive, who was 42 at the time.

Amanda Owen, Our Yorkshire's Farm
Amanda Owen, Our Yorkshire’s Farm

Back in 1995, Clive was running the farm singe-handedly when Amanda knocked on the door on one dark evening looking for a ram.

Amanda explained that she came to a burrow a “tup”, which is a male sheep for those not used to the farming lingo, when she first set eyes on divorced father-of-two Clive.

It may not have been love at first sight for Amanda, but bachelor Clive was immediately attracted to the young woman standing in his doorway.

“I do remember this six-foot something woman knocked on the door. I was very taken with her. You couldn’t not be,” he said.

They had similar backgrounds as Clive also came from a non-farming family but decided he wanted to pursue that way of life.

Despite the 21-year age gap, Amanda and Clive became friends before they started developing feelings for each other.

Our Yorkshire's Farm
Our Yorkshire’s Farm

“It was a slow burn thing we kind of got to know each other. Made friends first then went out a little bit together,” said Amanda.

“With us both coming from non-farming backgrounds we were kind of peas in a pod really but we didn’t know that at the time.”

The couple went on to have nine children, Annas, Violet, Edith, Raven, Clemmy, Nancy, Reuben, Miles, and Sidney, who all help out on the farm when they can.

It’s not always been a glamorous life, as Amanda gave birth on the roadside six times and once by the fire in the living room with only their dog for company.

Amanda has been breastfeeding virtually non-stop for 15 years of her life and with their ninth child didn’t even realise she was pregnant until she was six months gone.

Since becoming a reality TV star, Amanda has been forced to hit back at assumptions made about her family and claims she is not a stereotypical shepherdess.

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Last month, Amanda spoke out against the the suggestion she ‘doesn’t look like’ a farmer who is the mother of nine children on Steph’s Packed Lunch.

“Throughout it all you stay so glamorous. Which, always, I’m amazed about,” said host Steph McGovern.

Claiming this was certainly not the case, Amanda responded: “Look at my hands though Steph. Honestly, I’ve got iodine up my arm.

“I painted my nails while I was waiting to do this, but I really don’t know why I’ve bothered.”

Amanda admitted she doesn’t spend too much time thinking about the assumptions made about her looks and doesn’t like stereotypes.

“I mean yes I’ve got a sheepdog, yes I’ve got a crook. Yes I spend my time running around after sheep, but I can do other things too,” she said.

Amanda added: “I think that’s the name of the game, to be able to turn your hand to whatever comes your way.”

Our Yorkshire Farm airs Tuesdays on Channel 5 at 9pm.

Author: [email protected] (Kylie O’Sullivan, Lucy Marshall)
This post originally appeared on Hull Live – Celebs & TV


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