Writer and broadcaster, Rebecca Pow, has re-joined the Guild after a lapse of many years – and says she is delighted to be back amongst familiar faces and plenty of new ones!
The former presenter of BBC Radio 4 Farming Today and HTV’s farming programme became Britain’s first environment correspondent on television, based at HTV (later ITV West), and went on to present and produce a range of gardening programmes for Discovery, Channel 4 and ITV West.
“More recently I’ve set up my own company, Pow Productions, to focus on a range of media and communications activities,” says Rebecca. “These include writing, film making and broadcasting, particularly on gardening, growing, nature and rural issues – often based on activities at my own very small, small-holding.”
There is also a public relations dimension to the business, which this year includes farming-related publicity for the Royal Bath & West Show – hence her interest in becoming a Guild member once more.
“The Royal Bath & West is now the only four-day agricultural show in Britain,” Rebecca points out. “It’s still a really important event for farming, especially for the livestock breeders who showed more than 3000 animals last year. It’s also a major poultry and alpaca show and a wonderful showcase for the cornucopia of food products emanating from our farmers.”
A key educational attraction is Farming for the Family, which this year moves to the heart of the showground with 30 dairy cows enjoying self-service robotic milking as its centrepiece.
“It’s bound to get the public talking,” says Rebecca. “And although the show does not coincide with the half-term holiday this year, more than 3000 school children are booked to come on curriculum linked visits to the event.”
Other PR projects have involved different aspects of the rural sector, such as the launch of Sedgemoor Market Centre, one of the largest markets in the country; the Feastival food and sustainable lifestyle event devised by Mulberry designer-label founder Roger Saul; the Taste the Harvest on-farm educational event for school-children, and on-going film commissions and PR for Hestercombe, a top UK garden destination.
“It’s never a dull moment,’ says Rebecca. “And it’s surprising how my past media experience and the areas in which I have specialised – agriculture, the environment and gardening – have somehow all melded together; and they are more relevant today than ever!
“I must say, I never really lost my agricultural leaning and it’s great to be back in touch with that world again,” she adds. “I suppose it’s in the blood!”
- Rebecca’s home garden at Stoke St Mary near Taunton, Somerset is open to visitors under the National Gardens Scheme, for private visits and for the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations from Monday, June 4 from 2pm to 5pm.