Joe and Doris Richardson have Herdwicks and Texels on their land in Lamplugh, in the Western Lake District. We visited them in the grip of the long cold winter of 2012-2013, before lambing. Of roughly 110 ewes, Doris expects three quarters to have twins. They have a small flock and do not scan the ewes as larger farms do.
‘You can’t tell the ones with twins. You’ll see the yows gan round and think, maybe that yow’s got yan in, and then two great lambs come out! You think: where the hell’s it been hiding them?’
When a lamb needs feeding Doris takes it on as a pet lamb.
‘This one’s two year old now. She used to come to me, but now she’s gone a bit snobbish.’