Meet the Farmers [Part 1]

Hello friends, let us introduce ourselves. We are Dominic and Sandra Lawson and we own and run Shingle Hut Creek Farm.

We haven’t always farmed, actually, this is a first for us. Originally we started and ran a successful air conditioning company in Brisbane for 17 years, but as time moved on we started looking for a place to buy outside of the city. In 2014 we were blessed to purchase our present property, Shingle Hut Creek Nature Refuge, in Thornton, just 30 mins South-west of Laidley.

In 2017 after extensive renovations to the farmhouse (see photos below) we sold up and moved in over the Easter weekend.

Years of reading books written by men like Joel Salatin and Allan Savory have influenced our farming style to be one that improves the land and not deplete it of its resources, but to actually increase the ability of the land to produce and also create a gorgeous place to live and work.

We currently run a breeder herd of droughtmaster cattle for beef, as well as maintain the existing orchard, run a small group of free-range layer hens, grow up pastured meat chickens for the freezer, and milk a few dairy cows, the milk of which is used for fresh drinking, cream, butter and many types of cheese.

We live in a beautiful (though not quite finished) home with many unique characteristics. The north-west facing front of the house went from this (see above) to this (see below)…

The house was clad with spotted gum chamfer board, which we unpicked and re-used as much of it as possible. We clad most of the north facing veranda and turned it into our bathroom, toilet and laundry.

Upstairs for the kids rooms we put a dormer window in each to increase the head space and put up walls for their privacy.

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