George Farmer is everyone’s friend. Born on April 7 in Penola, South Australia, he grew up on his family farming property where they grazed cattle and sheep. They also grew a variety of crops including wheat, lucerne, potatoes and onions. He attended St Joseph’s Primary School followed by The Sacred Cross’ High School where he excelled in all sports that he attempted, except table tennis.
His dream of captaining the Australian cricket team was crushed after finishing school when he injured his shoulder in a motorbike accident while chasing a mob of pesky sheep. His love of sports did not diminish and he went on to captain his local cricket and football teams, which he has been doing so for the past 10 years which has included six premierships.
His knowledge of sports is widely known being asked to contribute regularly to sporting conversations on the local ABC radio.
George took over the management of the family farm, Telford, from his parents on their retirement nine years ago. At this time he moved into the family homestead with his beautiful wife Ruby. He made some minor renovations on first moving in, including changing the guest room in to a sports room with a large built in trophy cabinet.
Dr. Ruby Farmer
Ruby is as talented as she is beautiful. Softly spoken, well mannered and patient she grew up in the nearby town of Kincraig being the daughter of local machinery dealer and midwife, John and Penny Evans. Her parents drive and can-do attitude played an important role in shaping the woman that she is today. While attending University in Melbourne, she was won over by George’s good nature and humour.
She moved to Panoola where they were married shortly after and had their reception in the Panoola Football clubrooms. She was employed as an agronomist with a local agricultural company for two years before falling pregnant and having their children, twins Lucy and Jack. While bringing up the children and helping George on the farm, Ruby completed her phD in science for her studies into the relationship of irrigated crops vs non irrigated crops. Now with the title of Doctor, she consults to various government departments while still assisting where she can on the farm.
Jessie the Kelpie
Always by George’s side, Jessie is a quiet, reliable and loyal red Kelpie. Born eight years ago on George’s neighbour’s property, Pete and Ella Sutherland’s, Jessie was one of 6 pups born to trucking dogs, Rebel and Gypsy. She had a happy pup-hood roaming relatively free with her brothers and sisters, frolicking amongst the long phalaris playing games of hide and seek and find the bone.
At 8 weeks of age, Jessie took hide and seek a little too far, being found by George in the back of his ute at Telford. After being fed some tasty lamb shanks for afternoon tea, Jessie was won over by this man called George and knew she had found her dog-mate. Although Kelpie’s are renowned for being brave sheep and cattle dogs, Jessie prefers to bark at the livestock from inside George’s ute, after a scary altercation with a rampant steer 4 years ago.
The twin of Jack, seven year old Lucy comes across as a quiet and shy natured girl who likes to read, however like her brother she is quite cheeky and outgoing. When not attending St Joseph’s Primary School in Panoola, Lucy can be found riding her two wheeler motorbike that Grandpa Evans gave her for her 5th birthday over jumps that she created from old fence posts and tractor tyres. Her dream, along with becoming a travelling journalist, is to ride with the infamous Trusty Beacons freestyle motorbike group.
Jack Farmer Lucy’s brother Jack is a sweet natured and funny boy, who like his dad George, loves to play sport. On being awarded best and fairest for the school cricket team, George put on a party for Jack where his trophy was inducted to the Telford trophy cabinet hall of fame. He likes to practice his cricket spin in the back yard, bowling the ball against the laundry door much to Ruby’s disgust. He has a strong friendship with Jessie, who likes to help out occasionally fetching a stray ball, however for the most part prefers to spectate.
Another neighbour to the Farmer’s farm, Neville Burrows likes to keep a close eye on things. He is the first to point out to George when he’s done something on the farm that hasn’t worked successfully. Lucky for George he doesn’t mind criticism. Always catching George and Ruby by surprise, although nosey and interfering, Neville means well.
Kev and Susan Butler
The Butlers are professional shearer's from New Zealand, coming out to Australia every year to assist in the shearing season. Kev is an award-winning shearer having won the New Zealand Shearing Champions for two years in a row. His fastest time shearing a sheep is 16 seconds! Susan has a calming influence on the boards and although not as fast as Kev, has just the right technique.
Will the Wool Classer
Will is an old hat at wool classing having been in the industry for over 50 years. He is very passionate about wool. In the 1980s he started his own wool store in Kincraig called 'Ripper Jumbuk' which manufactures woollen bedding from Australian wool. Their products are exported right across the world!
Alex the Dairy Farmer
Not too far away from the Farmer's, Alex lives on his dairy farm with his two cats and girlfriend from the United Kingdom. Alex loves technology and was one of the first in the state to install a robotic milking dairy. He could spend all day in front of his computer refining the workings of the robotic dairy.
Jo the Beekeeper
Jo's work is also her hobby. Extremely intelligent with a funny sense of humour, she is madly passionate about bees and will speak to anyone willing to listen for hours and hours and hours about how clever the little insects are.
Ben the Fireman
Ben is a familiar face amongst many rural communities. He is a volunteer fire fighter. A website designer through the day and musician on the weekends, Ben bravely volunteers his time helping to fight fires around his community.