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Margaret Gass

Margaret Gass

Margaret Annie Gass was born in 1929 at The Murt, where her parents farmed in Wasdale. They moved to The Ghyll farm when Margaret was 11. She left school at 14. Margaret took over the tenanted farm at The Ghyll when her father grew too old to manage.

She remembers some resistance to the idea of a woman running a farm alone. She took on a partner to help her manage the heavy work a little later.

She remembers keeping Herdwick sheep and short-horn cattle, the importance of mowing back the bracken, and the great improvements that the new fertilisers brought. She tells of the hares that were once quite prolific in her area.

“…we had three (workhorses) at the Ghyll, maybe four sometimes; I think it was about 1947 we got a Fergi tractor with all the implements and then we just kept the horses ‘till they died.”