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Sunday 20 January 2019

Foxy farmers: Agricultural Adonises star in 10th edition of charity calendar

Outstanding in their field: Stephen Conway, Carlow. Photos: Ian Shipley and Jan Golden
Outstanding in their field: Stephen Conway, Carlow. Photos: Ian Shipley and Jan Golden
Outstanding in their field: Brendan Phelan, Tipperary. Photos: Ian Shipley and Jan Golden
Sorcha O'Connor

Sorcha O'Connor

IT has featured topless farmers knitting in a field of sheep, and grimacing donkeys getting their teeth cleaned -the Irish Farmers Calendar is marking 10 years of the best photos through the years.

The eye-catching calendar features tongue-in-cheek photos of ordinary Irish farmers.

Creator Ciara Ryan said the calendar had been a hit with the public and farmers alike - and worked well as a chat-up line for the participating agricultural hunks when they're enjoying a night out.

Ciara said she decided to create the calendar series when she was made redundant during the recession.

Heyday

The farmers calendar grew in such popularity that at one point it even outsold mega-popstars One Direction in their heyday. "I saw the popularity of the sexy fireman calendar and thought that the farmer really was the quintessential Irish man," she told the Irish Independent.

"It's difficult to get farmers, but when you get them, then they're the ones who are really up for anything.

"I direct the photographs and get that cheeky charm out of them," she added.

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The 'best of' calendar for 2019 features six farmers from Wexford, with the rest from Kilkenny, Mayo, Tipperary and Carlow.

And in an era focused on gender equality, Ciara hasn't had too many complaints about featuring only men.

"I did get a couple of emails from women about a female version - I think people would complain about that though too," she laughed.

A share of proceeds from the calendar go to charity Bothar and can be bought on farmercalendar.com.

Irish Independent





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