A couple of days ago a farmer quite near to us (three or four miles away) lost his entire stock of straw for the rest of the Winter to a disastrous fire. It is the fear of farmers everywhere because straw (and hay too of course) is so inflammable.
Rumour has it that the straw was ignited by a spark from the straw chopper which was chopping straw for adding to the evening feed. The farmer was, apparently, quite close at hand but had to move his livestock - he is both a dairy and a beef farmer and all the stock were too close to the straw for comfort.
Whatever the reasons and outcome, the fact remains that he is now without straw for the rest of the Winter and will -hopefully- have to buy in new supplies. Straw is used for bedding down the cattle (at this time of the year they are all inside) and is also chopped and added to various other ingredients in a balanced feed. By this time of the year there is not a lot of it about.
Farming is always a risky business as those farmers in Somerset know only too well - more rain and strong winds forecast down there throughout the weekend and again early next week. Will it never end?