Matt Baker explains how his mother’s accident led to highly personal documentary Our Farm in the Dales

Matt had to drop everything to return to the family farm.

Countryfile Prester Matt Baker (BBC Studios, JF)

Matt Baker has been revealing more details about his personal documentary series, Matt Baker: Our Farm in the Dales.

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The four-part More4 programme follows the former One Show presenter at a stressful time in his life, as his mother’s health prompted him to uproot his wife and children from their home in Hertfordshire, and move to the Durham Dales to support his parents.

In an interview in the new issue of Radio Times, Baker remembers the moment everything changed, in July 2020, when he received a phone call from his father. 

“My dad told me that Mum had had an accident,” he says. “We went straight back home.” Matt’s mum Janice had been injured while tending to the sheep on the farm, and she ended up with a broken leg and smashed knee. Baker knew he had to go back home and help run the farm.

“I’ve never felt the need to step in the way I did after the accident,” says the Countryfile host. “The last thing you want is to see your parents struggling, and Mum was very vulnerable.

“The hardest part for me was filming her in that situation. I’ve never seen her like that. Mum runs the show up there and she was so determined to keep going and passionate about what she does. We looked at the infrastructure [of the farm] so that Mum and Dad could continue living in the place they love so much.”

Baker admits he had to think long and hard before allowing the cameras to tell his family’s story for such a highly personal show. “We were never planning on doing a series on the farm,” he says. “It was a big decision. My children have never been put in the public eye at all but they’re at the age now where they can make their own decisions.”

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Read the full interview with Matt Baker in Radio Times magazine, which comes out tomorrow. Matt Baker: Our Farm in the Dales starts on More4 on Wednesday 31st March at 9pm. To find out what’s on TV tonight, check out our TV Guide.