Hollywood versus the Scottish Sheep Farmer

We love to go to the cinema to look at pristine nature. And there is a huge amount of money to be had in giving us that pleasure. Would we want that pleasure as much if we knew that it was driving folks off the land that we pay to see?

Before you answer, consider Jim Telfer. Jim is an 82-year-old sheep farmer who lives and works near Edinborough.

Jim … can trace his roots on the rolling farmland outside Edinburgh back to 1915, when George V was on the throne and Allied troops were in the middle of the disastrous Gallipoli campaign. Three generations later and Telfer, 82, is still up before daybreak tending to the newborn lambs that gambol round his smallholding.

Jim owns his building but not the land that he uses. That belongs to his landlord, the Gibsones. And the Gibsones want to sell the land to make way for a film studio. That transaction was approved by the Scottish government, who see a severe need for the cash that film making can bring.

But Jim does not want to sell. He would be devastated if he could not continue farming sheep on that very land. And he is fighting the transaction all the way.

So here is the question. Which side are you on?


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