SETTLE based photographer John Bentley's book Hill Farming in the North of England will appeal to anyone who wants to know more about hill farming as well as those who know and love the area.

Hill farming is a way of life, and although the hill farmer in the 21st century has changed with the times, the traditions remain strong and the dramatic upland landscape is eternal.

In his book, John has had access to the world of the hill farmer; photographing round-the-clock work, season to season, and still predominantly done on family farms.

From providing feed for the livestock – mostly sheep but also cattle - and shearing to haymaking, from lambing in the spring to ‘tupping’ time in the autumn, the images are a fascinating record of the life of the farmers. 

Farmers are also pictured going to sales, shows and sheepdog trials, and always with the backdrop of the dramatic landscape in the changing seasons.

The more than 200 photographs include the dawn start of a 'fell gather' at the summit of Ingleborough; when the  hill farmers round up the sheep and bring them back down to their farms; and a study of young farmer, Abbey White, preparing a Mule gimmer lamb for show and sale at Bentham Auction Mart.

There is also a picture of feed being taken to sheep in a snowy Austwick; and an iconic image of field barns and dry stone walls near Thwaite, Swaledale.

A spokesperson for publishers, Amberley, said: "It is a visual portrait of a remarkable way of life and a part of our farming heritage. Look through these photographs and you will quickly see the unique challenges of hill farming in the stunning but often harsh landscape of the area."

John is a photographer with a strong social-documentary interest and in railway photography.

He has written features for magazines such as The Dalesman and Cumbria and recently had a photo exhibition on livestock markets at the Folly Museum in Settle, where he also carried out a book signing event. Two of his railway photographs featured on the latest Royal Mail stamps of 'Flying Scotsman'.

Hill Farming in the North of England is published by Amberley Publishing; it can be bought from local bookshops and online sellers.