Gwern Williams’ days as a Massey Ferguson engineer, working for many years throughout Europe, South Africa and the Middle East are over. Now he, his wife and two young children are running their own farm, Nantygwyrddail, Islawrdref , near Dolgellau, on a 15 year tenancy with the National Trust, which they took over in October 2017.
But Gwern hasn’t finished with tractors just yet. As well as managing the typical 350 acre Meirionnydd hill farm, 250 of which is mountain land, Gwern runs his own business repairing tractors and machinery to supplement income.
“There are only about 20 acres of the farm where it is possible to harvest silage,” said Gwern.
“It’s just one of the particular challenges facing this type of farm, with limited land available to keep cattle over winter.”
At present they keep a flock of 130 Welsh mountain ewes, and 10 suckler cows, but hope to gradually increase the stocking in future.
The local FUW branch used the opportunity to show Dafydd Elis Thomas AM the importance of family farms like these and to discuss other matters such as open access to the countryside.