An East Anglian landowner adapts and prospers through renewables


The Raynham Estate in north Norfolk is steeped in history and since the 1500s has been a part of the Townshend family, which has always had its roots in agriculture and stewardship of the land.

Over the centuries, it has also produced numerous high-ranking politicians and soldiers. But the estate’s greatest son is best known for his association with a humble root vegetable. Charles ‘Turnip’ Townshend, the 2nd Viscount Townshend, revolutionised agriculture by creating a four-course crop rotation featuring for the first time clover and turnips. This allowed animals to be fed over winter and also provided vital nitrogen-fixing qualities

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