DOWN on the farm is where 19-year-old Ellie Owens has been happy to be, though a generous grant from Kington Show will soon be giving her a chance to see farming in action on the other side of the world.

Agriculture is in the blood for Ellie, a former student at Lucton School, who helps run 400 acres at The Woodhouse, at Shobdon with her parents, John and Philippa Owens, and 25-year-old sister, Hannah, who works for auctioneers, McCartneys.

Shortly after Kington Show, on Saturday, September 12, Ellie will be heading off on a six-month working farm trip to New Zealand.

She will be missing lambing time back at home – one of the high points on her farming calendar – but she will getting to grips with beef and sheep farming on both north and south islands.

Ellie will be presented with a £500 cheque on show day at The Ovals near Kington, and when she arrives at her destination at the end of the month, a full itinerary will be waiting for her.

“I am delighted!” said Ellie, who admitted to some apprehension at the challenge. “I’ve kind of got to do it now!”

Her strong love of agriculture dates back to early childhood, she explained: “I’ve loved it basically all my life, we’ve always been encouraged to do things on the farm.”

Beef and sheep are the mainstay at The Woodhouse, and the Owens’ also run a successful Welsh cob stud.

Ellie will be stock judging at Kington Show, where she has been showing sheep and horses for years, Ellie is prepared to tackle whatever comes her way in New Zealand – lambing, wool-handling at shearing time, and working with cattle and horses. Nor will she turn up her nose when she visits dairy farms at milking time.

An active member of her local Presteigne Young Farmers’ Club, Ellis regularly finds herself stockjudging in competitions. “Summer is my favourite season, I enjoy all the shows,” said Ellie. She has been showing sheep and horses at Kington Show for years, and will be stock judging at this year’s event. Lambing time she finds “exciting”, especially spotting a “good one”, as selling rams is part of the farm’s output.

Her visit to New Zealand, which begins in Hawkes Bay, has been drawn up with help from Presteigne farmer, John Davies, who knows the country through his sheep scanning work.

“It will be a challenge but I really want to see how they farm in New Zealand," she said.

She’s even considering a return visit at some point, but her heart is firmly at home in Herefordshire.

“ I quite like it here,” she joked.