The farmland on the Highclere Estate lies in an area of outstanding natural beauty. The land comprises a mixture
of chalk, clay and greensand. It is a mixed farm growing arable crops such as oats, wheat, barley,
linseed or at times borage as well as running sheep throughout the Parkland and on the high downs.
The eastern part of the Estate around Old Burghclere forms the heart of the arable cropping and records show that it has been farmed by the owners of Highclere for over 1,300 years. An Anglo Saxon charter records the name of one area as “scip dell” in 749AD – “sheep dell” as presumably they did well on the chalk grasslands.
The southern and western parts of the Estate are some of the highest farmed areas of Hampshire and again farmed in conjunction with the sheep.
The present Earl follows generations of his family in being committed to farming and continuing to win prizes at agricultural shows.
A central principle at Highclere is to combine efficient farming with sympathy for wildlife conservation.
Continual capital investment and innovation helps to ensure that Highclere produces excellent crops. Productive land then ensures that the rural heritage and diversity is best preserved.