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Nigel Owens International Rugby Referee – From Pitch to Pasture


*Content Warning: This episode discusses themes of suicide and may not be suitable for all listeners*

Mary-Jane Lawrie talks to Nigel Owens, a Welsh former international rugby union referee, who retired in December 2020 after a 17-year career. He currently holds the world record for the most test matches refereed and is one of five international referees listed as professional within the Welsh Rugby Union.  Nigel has recently purchased his own farm and has started a pedigree Hereford herd.  He talks about his early involvement in agriculture, his rugby career, his mental health struggles and his sexuality, and what he enjoys about farming.

FAS Resources

Health is Your Wealth: Physical and Mental Resilience | Helping farmers in Scotland | Farm Advisory Service (

Other Resources

Samaritans | Every life lost to suicide is a tragedy | Here to listen

RSABI: Home Page


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