East Peak Innovation Partnership (EPIP)
12 St Mary's Street
Penistone, S36 6DT
Call: 01226 763 201
People have been farming in this area for thousands of years rearing sheep and cattle and producing milk and cheese throughout the centuries.
You can stay on a farm and experience our traditional farming methods. You can savour the flavour of our food at our pubs, restaurants and cafes. Take some of the East Peak home with you – we’ve plenty of farm shops selling local produce. Meet the people who make a living from this spectacular landscape. Buy local and help our economy.
Did you know that the world’s biggest meat and potato pie was first made in Denby Dale in 1788. The last one was made in 2000 and measured 40 feet in length. High quality pies continue to be made in the village by Denby Dale Pie Company (wholesale) and David Gawthorpe’s Butchers, also a source of local meat.
There has been farming here in the East peak since the Bronze Age. High on the moors, there is evidence of field systems, where people may have grown cereal crops. Around Penistone, Hoyland, Thurlstone and Roughbirchworth, there are enclosed strip fields with their walls built in medieval times. You can still see the undulating ridge and furrow where oxen have ploughed these fields.
During medieval times, private landowners at Gunthwaite and Tankersley had their own deer parks. These provided venison and grazing for cattle and sheep. These parks were a symbol of status but during the 19th century they fell out of use and became farmland.
During Victorian times, large areas of moorland and common were enclosed, with the land improved for pasture. Large landowners bought land for their own use, mainly grouse shooting and reduced the number of sheep on the moors. Farming began to decline as people started to move to the towns and cities.
However, today agriculture remains an important industry in our region. You will find plenty of local produce in the shops of our villages and market towns. Our produce offers so much variety and people continue to earn a living from the land.