Graduate finds job as a human scarecrowby Laura Jane Walker
at University of Kent 10th October 2012 12:18:55
Entering a highly competitive job market, graduates may be tempted to find an unconventional way to make a living – and 22-year-old Jamie Fox has just done that, making his money as a human scarecrow.
Jamie, a music and English graduate from Bangor University, earns around £250 a week scaring partridges from an oilseed rape field in Norfolk, after its owner found that conventional scarecrows were ineffective.
Armed with a deckchair, a bright orange coat, an accordion and a cowbell, Jamie spends his eight-hour shifts in the 10-acre field frightening the birds. His downtime is consumed by reading books and playing his ukulele, while his daily visitors include his employer, William Youngs.
"Partridges love rape - it's like fillet steak to them," said Mr Youngs. “They nibble the leaves off, just leaving the stalk, and then it dies. Two or three years ago, we lost 30 acres, worth thousands of pounds.”
But after fruitless attempts at scaring off the partridges, Mr Youngs’ new employee appears to be
"Jamie's doing a good job,” Mr Youngs said. “You can really see the difference.”
Jamie enjoys his job, claiming that “a couple of my friends in busier, more generously-paid jobs, are slightly envious. It's nice to be out in the fresh air, although it gets very cold when the wind whips across the field and I've had to shelter in a wood when it's rained."
This eccentric job won’t be permanent, however – Jamie plans to travel to New Zealand next year and then seek a musical career.
But for now, Mr Youngs’ field is safe from partridges, thanks to Jamie Fox.