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This set doesn't include all the various 'Farm' series and their offshoots, but instead contains 26 hours of the three most popular series; Victorian, Edwardian and Wartime Farms. There is an earlier boxset The Complete Victorian Farm Collection Boxed Set [DVD] which features Green Farm, Christmas and Pharmacy, but not the more recent Wartime series. No doubt a total mega-boxset will be along eventually... but if you're looking for a comprehensive overview of British rural life, then this collection of the three main series, packaged together, is ideal.

If you haven't seen much of them before, the series follows a team of archaeologists and historians, helped by a cast of experts, who live on a working farm for a whole year using only the techniques and facilities of the era. The result is a thoroughly engaging, educational and entertaining programme firmly rooted in the traditions of British agriculture and rural life. Each episode is an hour long.
The trio of main presenters are experts in domestic and agricultural history and they cheerfully tackle all manner of tasks with informed enthusiasm. To make the project feel real, the team wear period clothes and use only the materials which would have been available at the time. Each series moves to a different farm in a different location, and the emphasis changes subtlety along the way, too. Wartime Farm, for instance, concentrates much more on the social history and (as you'd expect from the title) explores how country life was affected by WW2. Victorian Farm is much more about exploring old farming methods and investigating how people lived in a very different world to today.
Throughout the year the team tackle the regular tasks of rural or small town life - all without modern amenities. In each series they restore buildings , thresh the wheat crop, sow a new crop, install new technologies and adapt to the progress of the period, make cider and preserves, learn how to shepherd livestock, build pigsties, fell wood to build fencing, catch rabbits, experience steam power, and so on.
Frequently, things don't go entirely as planned, and the team share their less successful moments and well as the small, sweet triumphs that were part of everyday life. The scope of a full year spent on the farm allows the programme to demonstrate the natural progression of the seasons and the way they used to affect the men and women who lived directly off the land.
Each episode is packed with information and snippets, supported by authoritative experts and recreated with light-hearted enthusiasm - whether the team are making hooch or herding recalcitrant cows and pugnacious pigs. Harsh realities aren't ignored and there's plenty of muck and mire, but the Farm series concentrate on the positive aspects, providing a welcome relief from so many TV recreations which depend on conflict and distress for their 'drama'. The interaction between the three presenters is part of charm of these programmes, and Ruth in particular is refreshingly blunt and cheery about the practicalities of country life.

A superb overview of British social history, entirely suitable to be watched by the whole family: intelligent, educational, enthusiastic and entertaining. Well worth repeated watching, hence definitely worth purchasing.
MY SUGGESTION: if you don't already own any of these programmes then I would buy the boxset mentioned above, which is more comprehensive than this one, and add Wartime Farm as an extra.
9/10
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on 22 May 2013
Absolutely tremendous. Life as it was. Explained step by step by step, piece by piece, day by day.

This series allows you to understand the hardships and pleasures of the time. It takes you on a journey of living without the modern day contrivances of the 21st century. No local supermarket or electrical store. If you wanted or needed something, you made it.

I could write for hours about this series but I would rather you watched it yourself and experience the truth about "having a hard time".
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on 1 March 2013
A fantastic compilation of "living history". Three great personalities imparting knowledge and demonstrating skills and pastimes in such a fun and family friendly way. All my children love it. My 7 year old daughter has just been studying The Blitz and Evacuees and was able to write much more vividly in school because of what she had watched in Wartime Farm. It's so much fun the children don't even realise they are learning.

We all have one question - when is the next series planned for and what era is it going to cover?
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on 1 July 2016
I have really enjoyed watching this series, but I got to the stage that if I heard the word expert one more time, I would flip!
The main presenters are very personable and it was obvious that they put a lot into each project. It would have been nice to have some EXTRAS on each CD with "behind the scenes" info.
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on 4 March 2015
All three series are thoroughly enjoyable, they are very informative, very well produced and all three presenters demonstrated the workload, the hardships and the way of life in a very professional manner. There was sadness, laughter, disappointment. This is a realistic window into life in the three eras.
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on 23 January 2013
Nice set of DVD's, I love peter, ruth & glynn, in these sort of pastime programmes, they bring it life in such a good way, of how we used to live, in times gone past. I would highly recommend these to watch at any age group. I would also recommend this seller.
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on 25 February 2013
If you like agriculture and history this is the DVD set for you. Well presented, humerous, informative and captivating. Thorough enjoyment.
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on 25 February 2013
If you are into farm life this is a must dvd to have in your collection, This really shows how hard life on the farm must have been.
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on 26 February 2013
Thoroughly enjoyable look at how things were done in the past, and well filmed and explained by the presenters. Highly recommended!
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on 5 March 2013
We really enjoyed this on TV so perfect gift! I am 19 years old and I found this much more watch able than other shows they do.
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