Rest in Peace Julia

Just over two years ago, the very talented felted sheep maker Julia Knott made our life-size needle-felted sheep using The Hutchinson’s Swaledales’ wool and in doing so helped us promote Addicted to Sheep (view blog here). They were extremely popular at Sheffield Doc/Fest in June 2015 and really helped the film have a great presence at the festival where it premiered. The sheep went on to travel thousands of miles nationally and even to France. The miniature sheep she also made even joined us at our American premiere at Ashland Independent Film Festival last year in April 2016 (View blog here).
Julia Knott with her life-size sheep

Julia was a great help and believed in the project. She was a very special, kind-hearted lady. We have recently been informed that Julia has passed away following a battle with cancer. She was in remission at the time of making the sheep and told us it was a great therapy for her. She even involuntarily scared the postman away! When we visited her she told us that it was raining and so had to bring her flock of needle-felted sheep in progress in her small living room. She placed the life-size yow upside down with the four legs up in the air and started to point the needle at it so she could eventually finish it. When she turned towards the window she saw the postman looking at her with fear. Instead of waiting for Julia to open the door and give her the parcel he decided to run away. So Julia had to run after him and explain to him what she was doing and that she was not stabbing a sheep with a sharp instrument. It makes us smile thinking about Julia telling us the story. Her sheep will always remind us of what a wonderful lady she was and the hard work she did to make the sheep. May she rest in peace.

As a result, we will no longer be able to sell her miniature yows and lambs on our website but for those of you who have one of her sheep she will be remembered for a long time to come.

Julia Knott with her small sheep

Addicted to Sheep at the Houses of Parliament

On April 22, Tom and Kay Hutchinson who feature in Addicted to Sheep and Director Magali Pettier had the privilege to show the film at the House of Commons in London. It was such an honour and we are pleased that Addicted to Sheep brings the challenges farmers face to the attention of influencers. We hope that it will help bring positive changes to tenant hill farmers and farmers in general as well as opening conversation channels with tenant hill farmers for the future.

Thank you to the National Farmers Union and MPs Helen Goodman and Peter Aldous for making this happen. Read more about the event here.

Addicted to Sheep at Houses of Parliament

Watch On Demand: Now available to watch/download online!

It has been a long time coming but we are thrilled to announce that Addicted to Sheep is NOW available to buy or rent online. Different platforms cover different territories but it is now accessible globally in the English version! We hope we can reach many more people across the globe.

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Please click on the links / buttons below to access your preferred platform:

iTunes:    itunes.2be7431236ce  

Amazon:  amazoninstant.9cc905e8ae27

jMAN:      jmantv.7398ecba4f35

Vimeo:     Vimeo

For more details on which territories are covered by which platform please visit our ‘Watch’ page.

Out latest newsletter is also out. Please read here for more details on screenings.

If you do have any questions please do get in touch with us at and we will do our best to help.

Special Christmas Gifts!

Christmas is fast approaching and we can help you find the perfect present! We now have a limited edition of Addicted to Sheep T-Shirts which can only be purchased from our website here. They come in size S, M, L, XL and XXL but we only have a limited number for each! We also have 2 gift packs available at a reduced price and of course individual items such as DVDs, mugs, tote bags, cinema posters as well as needle felted miniature sheep made by Julia Knott. Please visit our online shop here. If you have any questions please do get in touch with me at

As we know that all our American and Canadian followers have been desperately waiting to see it on DVD but up to now we have only been able to produce PAL versions of the DVDs which can only be watched on computers in the US and Canada, Journeyman Pictures will produce DVDs on demand on our behalf for you. If you would like to make a Christmas gift to yourself or a loved one please contact Milo Riley-Smith at and write in the subject box ‘Addicted to Sheep NTSC DVD’.

And for our French supporters, bonne nouvelle! Le film est maintenant disponible en version originale PAL avec les sous-titres français depuis notre boutique en ligne ici! La bande annonce sous-titrée peut être visionnée ici. Le cadeau de Noël parfait! Si vous avez des questions n’ hésitez pas à nous contacter à l’adresse suivante


The continued impact of Addicted to Sheep: it has reached over 1.6 million viewers!

School Reprieved

Some of you will already know that earlier this year Forest-of-Teesdale School which featured in Addicted to Sheep was threatened to be closed by Durham County Council as it was seen as not being viable. It was sad news for the children, the parents and the community on a whole. We made some clips from the film available for them to use and show the benefits of having a small school in a rural area both for the children and the community. We are now delighted to say that after a lot of hard work from the School Board, the parents, the community and all of you who have signed a petition and showed your support Durham County Council decided to keep it open for now and for a lot longer we hope. Great news and a relief for everyone involved.

Addicted to Sheep Forest-of-Teesdale School

Artists, Farmers and Philosophers Symposium 2016

In September Director/Producer Magali Pettier had the pleasure to be invited to be a Keynote Speaker at the Heart of Teesdale Artists, Farmers and Philosophers Symposium in Barnard Castle, Teesdale, UK. She explored the importance of people in the landscape and how increasingly farmers and non farmers have to understand and respect each other as they all play a vital role in the landscape.

Tom and Kay Hutchinson were part of a panel at the Farmers’ session and gave their first presentation! They were a bit nervous but as usual they did a grand job in sharing their knowledge of what life on a farm is like.

A lot of interesting debates took place at the 3-day event. You can catch up on all the talks which have now been made available to everyone thanks to Ewan Allinson, Heart of Teesdale and HLF. Please follow this link. For Magali’s talk go to session 2 and to listen to Tom and Kay go to session 3.


Reaching more people everyday

The 60 min version of Addicted to Sheep has now been shown on BBC4 six times and with over 330 screenings of our 85 min version since its release we can safely say that the film has reached over 1.6 million viewers! Not bad for an independent film made and distributed by a very tiny teeny team!

The film has raised a lot of interest and discussions online. Here are a few comments we received. We love to receive feedback so a big Thank You if you shared your thoughts with us.

“I have just watched your documentary on BBC Four. It is by far the best factual programme I have seen for a very very long time. Totally fascinating as you don’t judge, discriminate, guide, narrate, advise. You let the pictures, characters and the natural flow of events unfurl into brilliant insight into a very hard way of life and let the viewer decide on the outcome of events.”

“I watched your film tonight as I ate my mutton broth. I was delighted, from the opening scene it was a joy. It put me in a really  good mood,  that there is someone who is making such a sensitive, moving and  funny film.”

Addicted to Sheep Screenings in November 2016

Already November! It’s already been 14 months since Addicted to Sheep was released in cinemas and it’s great to see that community screenings are still taking place. And that is because you have all been a tremendous help in spreading the word about the film and the impact it can have on communities and individuals. So a big thank you for your continued support.

This month we will have our first screening in Norway at Oslo Knitting Festival which is already full! Addicted to Sheep will also have its first screening in UTAH, USA and last but not least 6 community screenings will take place in the UK. Travel to North Pennines with Addicted to Sheep! Don’t miss our community screenings this month! View details below or from our website here.

Nov 4: Fownhope New Memorial Hall, near Hereford at 7.30pm, book here.
Nov 5: Oslo Knitting Festival, Norway – FREE, FULL, more details here.
Nov 14: Shuttleworth College, Biggleswade, Bedfordshire at 7.00pm, FREE, more details here.
Nov 16: Arkholme Village Hall, Arkholme, Lancashire at 7.00pm, more details here.
Nov 17: Tosside Community Centre, border between Yorkshire & Lancashire at 7.30pm, more details here.
Nov 18: Calder Village Hall, Calder Vale, Preston at 7.30pm, more details here.
Nov 22: Dale Street Methodist Church, Leamington Spa, Warwickshire at 7.30pm, more details here.
Nov 29: Utah Film Center, Salt Lake City, USA at 7.00pm, FREE, more details here.

Visit our website for further details.

And for your 2017 diary there will be a screening at Farnham Maltings in Farnham, Surrey on the 10th of February! If you would like to organise community and educational screenings please do get in touch with us at More information is also available here.

Addicted to Sheep, a hit at Doc-Cévennes

We are back from our 2,100 miles drive to France to show Addicted to Sheep at DOC-Cévennes – Festival international du documentaire en Cévennes in the south of France. It all went reasonably smoothly apart from a big scare on a tiny road. We learnt not to trust a GPS in this part of the world and to revert to the good old map! We thought it was the end for us but thankfully we were spared and were able to enjoy the festival!

One screening was scheduled to take place during the festival, however, following a very successful premiere to which about 170 people came, the festival screened it a second time and we are pleased to say that it was also a full house! It was very well received and a lot of people were interested to hear about how tenant farming works in England as it’s something that is disappearing in France, although it was once a practice spread across the country. Thanks to 3 wonderful translators who worked incredibly hard, the audience were able to enjoy the film subtitled in the french language. Subtitles can be difficult to get right to make sure that what is said on screen is not only translated properly and puts the idea across well but also that it is not too long to read and the viewer has the time to enjoy the visuals as well as read the subtitles. We were relieved to see that even with the subtitles the film did retain the meaning and sense of humour too and people laughed in nearly all the same places as an english audience!

Overall we felt that showing the film in France has allowed us to see the potential appetite for the film overthere and are now looking into ways to distribute it further. We did have a little hiccup though! We brought our life-size sheep with us over the border and to our relief didn’t attract the attention of Customs in Portsmouth! They went down a storm at the festival and we even had two 5 years old shepherds for the festival who named the lambs Lalita and Chocolat. They also told us that in our absence the lambs told them that they had a ear ache and so they went to the doctor who gave them cream for it and they were now better! It made us smile! Having the sheep was a great way to interact with younger and older audiences. The little girls also came to see the film and told me ‘c’était génial!’ Unfortunately overnight our lambs were stolen and so with the help of the community and the festival team we spent most of the day looking for them and after a few hours pacing the streets of Lasalle we were thrilled to find one hanging in a tree and the other on a ladder on the back of a van. Let’s say our sheep are very well travelled and are in need of a visit to the vet after their outing to France! It was all good in the end and the locals won’t be forgetting Addicted to Sheep anytime soon!

Here are some pictures of our adventures while promoting the film!