Shropshire Farm Achieves Work Life Balance and Productivity Soars

A year on from the design and build of a new milking shed and parlour at his 200 acre family run farm in Minsterley, Shrewsbury. Phillip Manning is relishing the dramatic improvements extended to the business and his family’s work life balance brought about with the help from local Shrewsbury companies John Hilditch Building Fabrications and PipeKit.

Last May, the completion of the project saw Bank Farm move from a traditional 10/10 herringbone parlour, built in 1969, to a new 40 point Milfos rotary milking system.  A change that has allowed the farm to reduce the milking times of its 340 strong herd from 12 hours a day to four.  Slashing the hours spent by two thirds and providing immediate benefits in the form of improving staff morale, allowing for more management and strategic time to be deployed but essentially creating happier cows.  Phillip Manning explains: “Cell counts have been reduced, there are no issues with mastitis anymore, cows have become more compliant in coming into the parlour and they are not waiting in the collection yard for long periods.  As a result milk production, in terms of volume and quality, has significantly increased which is essential for the future success of our family business”.

10 years in the planning, the initial idea came in 2002 when Phillip Manning’s father David Manning travelled to New Zealand in search of the best ways to modernise Bank Farm and transform the milking experience for the staff and animals.  During this trip he saw first hand the immediate benefits provided to farmers who used the rotary system.  On his return, he set about looking at different systems to offer the best working solution for the Manning’s herd and business.

Specialist Milfos suppliers McKnight Dairy Services were chosen to install the new rotary parlour equipment whilst local contractor John Hilditch Building and Fabrications were chosen to build a new and bigger shed required to house the system.  John Hilditch’s team worked to the specification plans drawn up by the Manning family to maximise best use of space and offer a high level of cleaning through out the facility.  Looking for a local supplier of Philmac and PE pipe and fittings, to meet the needs of three volume wash systems and the various water supply requirements in and out of the shed, J Hilditch turned to local, specialist plastic pipe distributor PipeKit.


Pete White Pete White

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