River Cottage Australia on hold – Paul West making new plans

River Cottage Australia, just outside of Central Tilba. From RCA Facebook page.
River Cottage Australia, just outside of Central Tilba. From RCA Facebook page.

River Cottage Australia at Central Tilba has been mothballed as backers of the TV show press ‘hold’ on further filming.

Host, Paul West says the future of the series is up in the air but he’s hopeful the show might return to TV screens one day.

“We don’t have a commission for the 2017 viewing year,” Paul says.

“For the last four years we have filmed a season every year continuously and this will be the first time we have had a break.”

The lush property, come TV set at the foot of Gulaga Mountain has been de-stocked, the cast of animals have all gone to good homes, their celebrity status attracting interest but not higher prices.

“We have stripped the high maintenance livestock out, like the chickens, the pigs and a lot of the cattle,” Paul explains.

“We just left a couple of the cows to keep the grass down, the property will still tick away but it won’t thrive like it has in past seasons.”

Digger the dog stays with Paul as part of his growing family.

“He’s not for sale…although that depends on how he’s behaving,” Paul laughs.

The West family on Paul and Alicia's on wedding day. From RCA Facebook page
The West family on Paul and Alicia’s wedding day @ The Sanctuary in Tilba. From RCA Facebook page

Having moved their life from Tasmania to the South Coast of NSW to film the show, Paul and his wife Alicia are now exploring new income options.

“It’s [River Cottage] not my property, I didn’t own it,” Paul says.

“As much as I do love going up there, I’ve got a family to feed, so I need to generate income, I can’t just do it for the love.”

Given the warmth many have for the show, it’s easy to forget that River Cottage Australia is a business – a partnership between Keo Films and pay-TV channel Foxtel.

According to Paul, the decision to rest the series is a commercial one that relates to the modern media landscape.

“The TV environment has changed rapidly in the last couple of years with the proliferation of on-demand streaming services and that caught our broadcaster on the hop a little bit,” Paul believes.

“They [Foxtel] had a restructure and River Cottage didn’t meet the criteria.”

Based on the long-running UK series hosted by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall,  the Tilba version of the show reached into communities right around South East NSW.

The skill, passion, and beauty of these small communities was showcased to 17 countries across Asia and Eastern Europe.

Local people and their flair for food, the environment and each other became the star of the show – and generated terrific goodwill and prosperity beyond the TV production houses.

“There is no doubt the filming of 32 episodes of this national and international show has had a positive impact on the region in many ways,” says Sarah Cooper, Business Assistance Manager, Eurobodalla Shire Council.

“Aside from the immediate economic benefit that comes with a full TV crew filming for 3 months each year, there will be long-lasting effects,” Sarah says.

“The increased tourism in and around Tilba with visitors wanting to sample the ‘River Cottage Australia’ life has been a huge economic boost for the region and will be for some time.

“It’s been a four-year partnership with Council and the community, we will miss the show.” she says.

Paul West speaks with Ian Campbell about his plans for the future:

Paul West laughs as he remembers meeting viewers from Hungary on the main street of Central Tilba.

“If you have an eye for natural beauty, great communities, and that true regional character, then this is the best part of Australia,” Paul says.

The cooking and gardening program has also made a number of skilled locals ‘famous.’

Matt Christison with Paul West. From RCA Facebook
Matt Christison with Paul West. From RCA Facebook page.

As the show moved along Paul needed to call on expert advice, drawing on CWA cook Nelleke Gorton, farmer and felter Tabitha Bilaniwskyj-Zarins, Erica and Nic Dibden from South Coast Cheese and Tilba Milk, and mobile butcher Matt Christison, among many others.

Matt says the show has changed him.

“It’s been a huge buzz, the crew made me feel so welcome – they are great people.

“I was gutted when I heard the news, I will miss it. The Cooking School especially has been very satisfying,” he says.

Matt’s profile on the show has been good for his own business, which he’s very grateful for.

“Other’s have been inspired too, there are a lot more mobile butchers out there now,” Matt says.

While the show featured the recipes and gardening tips you’d expect, it was also known for showing regional life in all its colours, including the slaughter of farm animals.

As the one firing the gun and often cutting the throat of an animal, Matt says the reaction of viewers was interesting.

“I am very proud of that work,” Matt says.

“We showed how it can be done naturally and humanely.”

On the flipside, Matt says he’s disappointed his butcher jokes were cut from the show.

“I cracked every ‘meat’ joke there is, none of them made it to air,” he laughs.

Kelly Eastwood is another of the names tied to show reflecting on the positive impact it’s had and making new plans for the future.

Paul West and Kelly Eastwood. From RCA Facebook page
Paul West and Kelly Eastwood. From RCA Facebook page

Kelly was the TV Food Producer and as a qualified chef was Manager of the River Cottage Australia Cooking School, which ran in conjunction with the TV series.

Kelly says the region has left its mark on her and she’ll be staying.

“With all the travelling I’ve done, this is the first place I’ve had an affiliation with, it feels like home,” she says.

Just like Paul West, Kelly has built a connection with the local community that has moved beyond the TV screen and into the fabric of what regional living is about.

Kelly has become a key member of the Tilba Chamber of Commerce and has just been appointed president of the 2017 Tilba Easter Festival committee.

“I got involved to say ‘thank you’ to this community for its support of the show and the cooking school,” Kelly says.

“Moving here for River Cottage Australia has been life changing, there are lots of reasons to stick around.”

Kelly says she’ll take the next month off and rest before jumping into anything new.

“There are lots of opportunities for good food here and I’ll be writing my cookbook over summer,” Kelly says.

“I believe so much in this region and I just want to show it off to the world.”

For Paul West, his wife Alicia, their 2-year-old boy and baby due early next year, River Cottage Australia lives on in many respects.

Triangle Farm Tilba. From Facebook
Triangle Farm Tilba. From Facebook

While the show might be hibernating, Paul’s passion for food is awake and kicking under the banner of Triangle Farm Tilba.

Over the last couple of months, Paul has been turning a grassy paddock on the Princes Highway, opposite the Dibden’s dairy farm, into a market garden.

“When you are making a TV show you do more TV making than you do food growing,” Paul says.

“Now that the TV show isn’t on the horizon, I want to do more food growing.

“I’ll be growing a variety of chemical free vegetables that I hope to sell into the Bermagui and Tilba farmers markets, and maybe I’ll get down to Bega as well, and supply a few hospitality businesses,” Paul says.

A pop-up food stall is also part of Paul’s thinking, but he’s keen to get the garden producing first.

“Tilba sits atop a region that is colloquially known as the triangle,” Paul explains.

“It’s the trio of villages – Bermagui, Cobargo, and Tilba, they make a triangle on the map.”

Paul says the name Triangle Farm is also a nod to the triangle being the strongest shape.

“And the three points [of a triangle] also symbolise produce, place and people – the three most important elements in food,” Paul says.

Over the last four years, River Cottage Australia has been nominated for a number of TV industry awards, including best lifestyle show at the recent Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts (AACTA) Awards, it has attracted weekly audiences of up to 132,000 people and sold thousands of cookbooks, but perhaps its greatest achievement is the mark the show leaves on the community that took it on.

Farewell River Cottage Australia – fingers crossed you come back one day.

108 thoughts on “River Cottage Australia on hold – Paul West making new plans

  1. My husband and I absolutely love this show and even drove all the way down to Tilba Tilba so see The River Cottage. We hope it will return one day. The show was realistic and family oriented. Other shows these days a rubbish and very heavily scripted. Very disappointed that this show isn’t on anymore.

    1. I am really sad to read that the show has been decommissioned. My husband and I have only just discovered river cottage Australia. It is inspirational to clean living and sustainability
      I actually thought the tv show was true life so am dissapointed to some degree
      I hope that there is a change of heart and the show does do another season

  2. So sad that I won’t have River cottage Australia to watch this year!
    It is by far the most inspiring program for Australians to really understand the grass roots of living off the land. I know Paul had help at the farm but I spent 8 years on 23 acres on the Darling downs when my children were young (it must be said that you may need a supplementary income to enjoy this lifestyle) and River cottage actually was a good depiction of small holding life in Australia. The incorporation of all his neighbours wonderful produce and help is exactly what happens in so many places in our country. The younger generation in my family have loved it and it is not just a dream in their eyes, it is doable.
    My hope is that it will return to help us learn even in small situations how to be self sufficient and admire our beautiful countryside.

  3. Dear River Cottage

    Sad to not be watching the series again this year as it was a weekly highlight which was highly anticipated and helped us get through the week.
    Having recently moved to Sydney for work the show was an inspiration for the way we would prefer to live and having been bought up on a farm it truely reflected the spirit and personalities of the rural and small town lifestyle.
    Paul’s kindness, zest for life and genuine love of cooking and produce shone through our TV screen and it is hard to understand why the networks are not continuing this year with such an educational series, you simply cannot find a more genuine show which truely depicts a self sustaining lifestyle.
    So long to you and the animals for now and all the best for the future, we truely hope you return to inspire us through our weekly grind in the near future

    Regards Mat

  4. Dear Paul and crew
    My family and I really loved river cottage It is the only show our multigenerational family all watched. It was both educational and fun. We hope Paul and the crew return soon.

  5. What a disappointment to hear River Cottage is not returning in 2017. My 12 year old daughter has all the DVD’s and we watch them over & over. We are coming to Tilba at Easter just so we can see where it all happens. Good luck with everything Paul & family.

    1. Hey Donna, might see you around. Just a heads up. Since my story was written, Paul and his family have decided to move on and out of the area. So please dont come hoping to catch up with Paul at Triangle Farm. Don’t be surprised however to bump into Kelly Eastwood from the show who is the driving force behind the Easter Festival this year.

  6. Very disappointed to hear that the program is on hold. All the best for your future, Paul and family. So glad Digger has a permanent home and family! Alan.

  7. I am disappointed that it didn’t run into a 5th year but seeing as it as almost the same format as the English version with Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall whose own version only lasted the same time until they had the follow on series, which were very successful, maybe they will follow with the same in the “return to river cottage series” we can only hope.

  8. I came across your page while looking for a start date on River Cottage as it usually starts in Autumn, I’m so sad to read it isn’t coming back to our tv screens! My young son and I have been avid viewers since it started, it was one of his favourite shows. While there are loads if reality tv shows and home reno shows there aren’t any others showing how to be self sufficient in an environmentally sustainable way. It’s a huge loss for parents like myself who want to teach the importance of ethical food production and life skills to their children. Let’s hope the prosucers have a change of heart.

  9. So sad River Cottage Australia has been discontinued. So many reality TV shows are so contrived but this programme had all the earmarks of genuine love of the “outback” Australia. We have been to Tilba Tilba and enjoyed the town with all its various somewhat quirky stores. Paul was such a lovely man on the show and am sure he is like that in real life.
    Maybe, just maybe Fox may have a rethink and at least have one more series soon. BTW, who actually owns the property??

  10. My 11-year-old son has been waiting and waiting for this show to return, it was a family show we all loved to watch together and dream of living the life Paul lived. So sorry to see it gone.
    I don’t get why Foxtel invest in all the other c$%p they make and cut something this wonderful.
    Sad day, have to break it to him when he wakes up 🙁

  11. River Cottage Australia was one of the few programmes that has kept us keeping up our Foxtel subscription. Instead we are expected to enjoy low grade programmes with multiple ads throughout and still be prepared to pay for the pleasure. Pity Paul, we will miss you.

  12. While wishing Paul and his family all the best in his new journey, my family will miss gathering around to watch the show and hoped to visit the farm one day. He has inspired my daughter to want to work on a farm, learn to be a chef, grow veg and edible flowers, practically follow in Pauls footsteps. My husband introduced me to River Cottage featuring Hugh 15 yrs ago or so and for foxtel to shelve the show is devastating, its disappointing for everyone. Hope they reconsider and give us back a quality show rather than current shows that encourage me to reconsider my subscription.

  13. I cannot believe one of the best programs on TV, has been mothballed. There is an audience for this genre of program. Those ‘reality shows’ are part of the agenda to dumb down people, no violence, swearing, please bring it back.

  14. Like everyone here I have been waiting patiently for the return of River Cottage Australia. So disappointing to know it is not in the near future. My dream was to stay/live at the cottage. I hope it is not just left abandoned after all the work to make it into the wonderful, thriving place it was. I am sure Paul and his family will make Triangle Farm another thriving, family-oriented place. Lucky we didn’t make the trip last school holidays as previously planned.

  15. Hi guys
    The only reason I subscribed to Foxtel was to view river cottage Australia!!!!!
    I have seen every episode of river cottage and was wrapped RCA was conceived by Hugh and the Foxtel gang. Bitterly disappointed by the decision but that’s business!! I still don’t understand how half of the shows on Foxtel out rate RCA as I don’t watch them.
    Fingers crossed that the ‘management team’ see sense and commission season 5 will be waiting

  16. Oh no! Gutted!! I just did the same – went online to see when the next series is starting! Ditto so many of the comments above. It was the one programme our whole family sat down & made a point of watching altogether. A huge loss, given the amount of rubbish that’s on TV most of the time. We’ve been wondering about our Foxtel subscription too this last 6 months. Maybe this is the final straw for us.

    Good luck to Paul & family as they move on to pastures new. You’ve inspired many people. Glad to hear Kelly fell in love with the place like the rest of us & that she has decided to stay. Good luck in her ventures too.

  17. Hi RCA
    I will miss the show a lot, really enjoyed the way Paul presented farm and small community life style the Australian way.
    Come on Fox what about life on the Triangle Farm.
    Kind Regards.

  18. Have been waiting for the next series to start and really sad to read the show is on hold. The program has inspired me so much that I’ve returned from the UK with my family and bought 100 acres to have a go at living off the land. This show is like a reference guide for me, was really looking forward to learning more. Keep my fingers crossed that Paul and the crew will be back again soon

  19. I’m devastated. I love this show . I think the focus in seasons 3 & 4 on trying to make the farm pay its own way was a mistake. It was early days and the focus should have been on Paul, the farm and the area, not on selling food baskets and a food van.
    We visited River Cottage HQ in England, had a tour and a meal. It was a fantastic experience and I was so hoping to do the same at Tilba. Please bring the show and the farm back. I always feel inspired to do more at our place after watching it.My son-in- law is hooked now too.
    I love Paul’s exuberance and enthusiasm and the fact that he will give anything a go.

    1. My husband and I enjoyed watching this programme which screened in New Zealand. Sad there will be no more. All the Best Paul to you and family not forgetting Digger.

      Dianne Fraser

  20. What can I say, other than total devastation. I have watched River Cottage UK, since the first episode, and was overjoyed to see the Australian version. I am a novice hobby farmer wanting to be self sufficient and having River Cottage sharing such precious and insightful information relative to Australia has been priceless. There is no other programs that gives volumes of information and resources relative to our beautiful country. My black thumb has turned a little greener and my husbandry skills have improved 10 fold due to River Cottage Australia. I was saddened to know that the farm is not owned by Paul and his family and that ownership is UK based. Thank you Paul, crew and every local involved, you have done us all proud, and I will pray for the day the show is again on air. Thanks from Far North Queensland.

  21. RCA something wholesome & truly educational that taught our city cousins about life cycles and sustainability. Sad news Australian viewers have lost a true gem of the grass roots kind. Positive that Paul West & family will pop up somewhere again & bring us another enriching service. The legacy left to the tourism of area will be enjoyed for many more years hopefully.

  22. Hello
    Like all so sad that this has been cancelled and that Paul and his family have left the area. Just one question – after all the hard work that has been put into the property what will happen to it as it was such a beautiful place and have had the pleasure of being there in 2015.

    1. Probably a commercial decision to cancel the show because of the number of viewers compared to other “reality” shows. Also, a Foxtel executive said “I lost count of how many goats got murdered”. Perhaps some people don’t want to face the reality of how meat actually gets to their tables.
      The property which was purchased in 2013 for $650K was listed on the market last month for $895K.

  23. I was wondering when it was returning and found out it is done. I am super sad about that. This was one of my favorite shows. And I live in California!

  24. Sad to here that this great lifestyle show has been canned, an inspiration to any and all who wish to give the city the old heave ho, and seek the country living best depicted in the series, River Cottage Australia, good luck to Paul and his family, and good luck Kelly and with your decision to stay on in Tilba, and all the very best to all the guests, locals, crew and to the township of Tilba, and to the day I can too, share a frothy top at the pub with you all….

  25. Watching a show now. 3rd time through the series…
    Hubby and I are looking for our piece of paradise to build our river cottage lifestyle. We have visited Tilba, driven past the property.. true blue…
    Thanks for the inspiration. We will miss your laugh Paul. God bless

  26. Really disappointed that River Cottage Australia isn’t coming back. It’s one of the few shows I really enjoyed watching. Seriously considering cancelling my pay tv subscription now.

  27. As I do not have Foxtel I was surprised to see the DVD set at the shop. Of course, I bought the whole series and it was worth it. I was disappointed to hear that the series is not going ahead, a pity the ABC doesn’t pick it up, I’m sure you will have a much bigger following then.
    My partner and I are always looking at the native bush tucker around us and including them in our cooking. So this series is very relevant to our lifestyles in the Tropical North. I can only hope that Paul will continue along in another series. Goodluck. Maybe something with the Bushtucker Man from the North might be an idea?

  28. I’ve recently discovered SBS Food Network and just yesterday caught a brief ad advertising the ‘new series’ of River Cottage Australia would be airing on that network on 3 July 2017.
    Visited the SBS website, but there is no mention of it…
    Am really, really REALLY hoping it is a new series and that RCA will be on our screens next month!

  29. I’m so happy to have stumbled upon this great article. I, too, am/ was a huge fan of River Cottage Australia (and the original River Cottage UK – so much so that I made a point of eating at the River Cottage Canteen in Bristol on a trip to the UK back in April this year!). Having grown up on a small farm in central Tasmania I totally sensed the genuine community ethos of this endeavour. It wasn’t just a “TV Show”. I was also really happy that Paul identifies as Tasmanian. Maybe we could start an online petition and crowd funding campaign for Paul and Hugh to bring it back as an independent production?

  30. Trying to explain to my 8 year old why this show isn’t on TV anymore and what has become of “Good girl Bessy” the “hungry hippos” (the pigs) the chooks and goats is quite challenging. She has gone from a very picky eater to willing to try, want to grow her own and take part in the kitchen.
    With so much talk about children not being educated about food, where it comes from, the time invested to get food to the plate etc.. it very sad to have to close the book. Living in Sydney city we don’t have the yard sizes for elaborate gardens (at best it’s a herb pot) but RCA gave such an amazing insight into so many ways of life and taught my girl a new found appreciation of food that I was raised with. This was not only a great watch, it was educational, inspiring and emotionally investing. I do very much hope it does return. Good luck everyone who made the show what it was x

  31. Paul, Really sorry to hear of the shows demise- it was wonderful to watch you, Digger, and the stunning scenary and farming. I wish you every success in your next venure- and THANKS for all the insights into an amazing part of the world.
    Nigel- Ireland

  32. What a shame this show is not continuing. I was just checking online to see when the show would be back only to see the bad news. Surely with all the American rubbish that passes for cooking shows we have room for a show with integrity such as River Cottage?

  33. The original River Cottage was a huge inspiration for myself and my husband here in our own farm and food property in Tasmania. Personally I’m interested in seeing the Production companies waking up to the fact that women do this sort of thing too – moving to the country, grafting on the land, making food, babies and businesses. My blog and my book are all about just that – living the good life in Tasmania. Apple Island Wife. It’s crowdfunding now!

  34. Hi Paul, yes it is sad that the series has ended. Better to be on a high at the finish. How about your own show on your new property with your growing family and Digger. “River Cottage the next move”.
    Australian’s need more shows like yours mate. Waiting for your come back in the not to distant future.
    Regards, Jim.

  35. Truly disappointed that the show has been cancelled really enjoyed watching as did my husband. Such a shame and a waste. The production company should be ashamed of themselves. UK

  36. Love the show,have watched all four seasons and am saddened that there is no season five. The great camaraderie exhibited by the people of the region showcase what country life is all about….everyone coming together to support each other, the community and share skills. The relationship of good wholesome meals produced from home grown foods and prepared in a gorgeous country kitchen is a winner,
    We too have visited this region and seen the gorgeous town of Tilba and the villages of that area.
    Fantastic series, please bring it back.

  37. The main problem appears to have been the difference in the UK and Australian shows set up. Hugh appears to have made a firm decision early in the UK project and invested into creating businesses to support his family and satisfy his passion for the River Cottage project. The Australian setup seems to be solely a media presentation on a lifestyle rather than building sustainable business ventures to create the lifestyle and educate like minded people. It is a shame it didn’t work because the differences between UK and Australian land and farming are significant and this series did manage to highlight this.
    Unfortunately we live in a shallow world where so called reality shows ‘the Batchelorette and Yummy Mommies etc reign supreme. Good luck to Paul and others who worked on the series

  38. Absolutely gutted. This was such a highlight of our viewing each evening, depicting real life and teaching kids the facts of life when it comes to food – where it comes from, how it’s grown as well as animal rearing for food. Such quality viewing when there is so much rubbish on TV. Thanks Paul West and all the local people who showed us there is life outside big cities. I think we have all learned something about values. My very best wishes to Paul and him family and a big hug for Digger!

  39. I have been thinking I must have missed the new series of River Cottage Australia. I finally got around to trying to find an airing date and what I found was devasting. I can’t believe it is not going to continue. It was so enjoyable to watch a show that any member of the family could watch what with all the rubbish that’s on the tv. It will be greatly missed. Thanks for all the lovely episodes.

  40. Best show in years!
    It was lovely to see a community help each other out and it was inspirational to watch the farm grow!
    Hopefully it will be back soon, as television is mostly rubbish now.
    Sad to see such a gem go!

    Very disappointing.

  41. I grew up in Bega and visited Tilba, Bermagui, Cobargo and Narooma on occasions. Watching the show brought back memories as a child and teenager. My grandfather and mother were dairy farmers in The Bega Valley.
    I didn’t know what I had until I moved to the Gold Coast! seriously considering moving back as I miss that community spirit and sustainable lifestyle. Of course having children has inspired that thinking as well as watching River Cottage and my son wanting a farm full of animals.
    I loved all the episodes especially the Bega Show as we went there every year! Good to see some familiar faces too! People who know the good life and stick around country life.
    The far south coast NSW truely is beautiful and as someone once said “surfing in the morning, snow skiing in the afternoon! Not too many places you can do that?!?

  42. One of the few quality shows on television. It is the 1st show in years I have looked forward to getting home from work to watch. There is so much rubbish on television and River Cottage was a refreshing quality program. Let’s hope it comes back in the future.

  43. My partner & I love River Cottage Aust and am dumbfounded as to why it had to end. All the best wishes to Paul & family, huge hugs to Digger. Why do we have to suffer the rubbish served up on TV when there is such quality and inspirational shows like yours. Very sad, Natalie & Dave

  44. Does anyone think that perhaps a “Go Fund Me” could be organised to have a private production on the same theme with our hairy faced chef / farmer involved? Still watching the series at the moment

  45. We thought the film was for ‘real’ . However still love watching and very sorry it is to be discontinued.
    Paul is a likeable believable man. It has sure put Tilba on the map.

    Dee and Mitch

  46. Paul my friends and I miss river cottage so much. Why oh why did they take it off. I am so sick of all the repeat shows Foxtel put on each and every week. Your show was a breath of fresh air all new and interesting. I am sure Hugh was a little disappointed that it would not continue. I wish you well your wife and son and the new baby to. Maybe one day you can do it all again starting of small just like Hugh and get one of the TV channels to take it up. Anyway I wish you all the best

  47. I am astounded that river cottage is not being continued. One of the few reality tv shows that we watch. With all the rubbish on free to air tv this was a shining light imo. Hope sanity prevails and it returns soon. Cheers Paul west and crew genuinely great tv.

  48. Very disappointed that river cottage has been cancelled. I bought a similar property and over the past 4 years I have been following RCA and using some of the advice from the show.
    Was one of the best shows for the whole family with realistic shows.
    Far better than anything else on tv today.

  49. Could you please advise me about the episode on Honey Bees, any information would be appreciated.
    Love the show
    Many thanks
    Moya Shanks

  50. Wow, River Cottage has been such an addictive event at my house. I can’t think of one episode that I wasn’t on the edge of my seat. We record it and sometimes watch 3 or 4 shows a night!
    Yes the community feels really warm and genuine. How good is life on the south coast, congratulations Paul and Digger and thankyou Tilba!

  51. I have only just discovered River Cottage Australia… well, I did know about it because my sister was always raving about it… but then I wasn’t in a position to ever watch it, until just recently.. where I sat down and watched all of them in the last three days… I must say it has changed the way I see my 10 hectares and I will certainly be using some of the fantastic ideas and recipes that have come out of each segment. I’ve loved the series and concept so much… and also very sad to see it has come to an end…. but the legacy of the series will live on, because it is just a matter of popping it into the DVD player and being inspired all over again.. and again… and again. thanks for putting together a fantastic series and to all the people involved.

  52. Having just discovered River Cottage this year on SBS at 6 pm where I am, I can tell you it is the ONLY daily show on television that I watch faithfully. I will miss it terribly and I’m very very sorry to see it go. I wish the whole community could chip in to buy the property and have Paul manage it — a great place for his growing family and Digger to get on with their lives. I did suffer watching some of the kills (for some reason particularly the ‘disabled’ chick) and I’m a very limited meat eater but the message of table to plate produce, free range eggs, etc, ecologically responsible farming methods, sustainability, the importance of community, education, etc is needed even more today than when the show started production. I came on this page by random when I was looking for more info about Paul being at the Bangalow Markets on Saturday but I hope someone gets this message so late.

  53. Popular television in this day and age means utterly deplorable shows like Big Brother or The Housewives series or some reality shows which are frankly an insult to one’s better judgment. RCA is a truly worthwhile televison production which has touched many viewers, not just nationally but globally as well judging from viewer feedback from other countries. What Paul West is doing on his farm is not just about planting his vegetables or growing his livestock or cooking his produce. He is passionate about his work on the farm, showing respect and love for the land and the animals, the importance of community – of looking out for one’s neighbors, of comradeship, generosity and trust and in sharing in the goods of the land. How Paul and the rest of the Tilba community goes about doing what they love are very good examples of responsible stewardship of the land they live in. How absolutely inspirational television! What a wonderful facet of Australia to show to the world because yes – the world is interested! How sorely lacking is Australian television of shows of this genre and what an absolute shame that is.
    Most unfortunately Foxtel is no longer interested. Not much profit to be gained from the show maybe. Somehow payTV channels believe showcasing ‘badness’ is more popular and profitable than highlighting ‘goodness’ in shows such as RCA. It’s all about profits and popularity- never mind that being ‘popular’ in this day and age is nothing to aspire towards.

    Keep doing what you love Paul! We miss you and wish you and your family including Digger all the very best. Maybe one day in the near future we’ll see you back on our tv screens again!

  54. This is one of the few shows on television that is worth watching. It brought us back to SBS and caused us to watch many more SBS programs. I don’t understand the decisions that programmers make. This is a good show, it isn’t reality trash – it is reality treasure.

  55. Thank you Paul for such a wonderful heartfelt country series. Please give Digger a hug for me.
    I am watching River Cottage Australia on SBS and am saddened to read that the project and series has come to an end. Many Australians do not have Pay TV – so we have only just begun our love affair with the show, down to earth Paul and his growing family and of course the animals – especially Digger and Bessy. I am so sorry about Ron.
    You are making changes in people’s lives, their backyards and kitchens at grass root levels. As a gardener and a cook I love the yummy recipes. I love the honesty and the relationships between the local food producers.
    The time for sustainable living, growing and purchasing food locally is now! Come on producers “a Return to River Cottage Australia” is the next logical step… Australia is waiting….
    Cheers Tanya

  56. Such a shame that commercialism wins the day again. Having recently made our own sea change move from Perth WA to beautiful Evandale Tas, we thoroughly enjoyed looking at similar scenery in Tilba. The work and love that Paul, his family and team have put into developing the farm is outstanding. We have always enjoyed River Cottage UK and it was great to see Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall visit Paul. However, we can relate so much more to an Australian series. Please consider the wishes of other viewers and re-consider returning River Cottage Australia to our screens. Whatever happens, best of luck Paul to you and your lovely family.

  57. I grew up in the country on Eyre peninsula, Moved to the city when I was young to find work, living in the hum drum and every day life of the city, people forget the country life style, My husband died 7 years ago and I decided to move. I have 2 blocks of land and have got right into gardening etc.
    I found your show an inspiration, something to bounce off, get hints, tips from, and to view ideas in another prospective
    I will miss the episodes…
    cheers Liz

  58. Tragic – a show for the whole family with wonderful animals and great recipes. Please bring it back. Hope Paul is happy with his lovely family, and that Digger is part of his family!
    We need more authentic Aussie programmes which illustrates life in the country, the wonderful community spirit which give those living in towns and cities a view of the spectacular Australian scenery.

  59. My wife and I loved watching the series. It isn’t often a TV show has real lovable characters that everyone can relate to.
    Within the 1st series we already wanted to visit Tilba. By the end of the 4th you want to live there.

    It is a shame the investors don’t see the long term investment in a show like this. The audience would have kept growing.
    With cooking classes that were already added and adding farm stays, this could have been even bigger.

    Hope to catch up with Tilba soon, we wish Paul and his family the best. Thank you Paul, the crew, and Tilba for such an awesome series where real people were able to share part of their lives with us all. You have a piece of heaven there.

  60. We also love river cottage which is still on Tv each night (sbs 6pm) we dropped in last week to catch up with locals in bermagui, tilba, cobargo , its message is clear , good living, hard work, friendship, community, laughter, we look forward to a return series, hopefully with Paul and digger?!!

  61. Only recently discovered RCA and absolutely loved it . Paul is just so down to earth, enthusiastic and capable and the show really inspired me with its combination of sustainable farm life and food. Very disappointed that it has been cancelled and I wish Paul and family all the best.

  62. So sad :(( I have only recently discovered RCA which has been airing on SBS every week night at 6pm – who needs the 6 o’clock news with all its doom and gloom when you can watch this delightful show. Paul was a wonderful host. Loved absolutely everything about it. Good luck to you Paul and your lovely family.

  63. River cottage brought back the Aussie spirit of self sufficiency and showed us that we can live outside of the big cities and that it is okay to dream of an alternative lifestyle. The TV program will be sadly missed especially Paul West who gave his very best notable his culinary skills and his love of country.

  64. Love RCA so much there is nothing else like it on Australian TV that shows the true Australia. Such a great show love Pauls realness, he’s a true character. Please come back for season 5.

  65. I just watched it for the first time on Sbs last night and i absolutley LOVED it. It was the episode where he got his first pigs. Cant wait to catch up on all the episodes. My kids will love to watch it.

  66. Please bring back RIver Cottage Australia!
    Paul West is a natural on television, his enthusiasm for what he does is infectious and there really are lots to learn and discover from this worthwhile show -whether it’s with plants and gardening or cooking yummy recipes or taking care of livestock or just getting to know the absolutely lovely area of Tilba & its fabulous community! We know Paul gets paid for being on the show but really, it is his love for what he does and that he is a genuine sort of guy who really cares for his craft which is the real drawcard for many viewers of the show.

    So come on SBS. Pick up the mantle where Foxtel had left. River Cottage Australia is a true GEM of a show. There’s a legion of existing fans out there who would be forever grateful to you – and no doubt you’ll be garnering plenty of new ones along the way!

  67. Absolutely loved River Cottage Australia. Have watched every episode of each series since day 1. So sad that show has been placed on hold and seeing the property in Punkalla Tilba road has been sold dont expect the show will return so we travelled from Auckland to visit Tilba and the surrounding district to get a first hand feel from what has brought a heap of pleasure to us over the years. Good luck Paul and family for whatever lays ahead and thanks for the memories.

  68. I loved River Cottage, both UK and AU, and will miss it very much, it is one of the very few reality shows I will watch, as most of them seem very contrived and false. I wish everyone concerned with the show all the best and good luck for the future.

  69. Seeing River Cottage Australia was back on TV has made my day! I’ve missed Paul, Digger and all the animals and people of Tilba. I’ve got two items on my Xmas wish list this year. The DVD set and a wish for a new series of RCA. Fingers crossed for this delightful and entertaining program.

  70. In days gone by the old saying was when you are on to a good thing stick to it. But not anymore such a great shame that this beautiful show is put on hold. Thanks to Paul, Digger and all the people of the Triangle area all very best you make Australia proud well done. You’ll all be missed in this house hold.

  71. Cannot believe this awesome cooking show is going to be scrapped. Paul West is such a fabulous, funny, interesting, lively presenter. Certainly gives Hugh a run for his money!! We all have to endure so much garbage on television these days, so many tasteless reality shows shoved in our faces all week. We could do with bringing back some good wholesome family values which this show portrays. It is so refreshing and uplifting watching Paul on the farm, cooking and interacting with the people of Tilba. So annoying that Hugh kept his show going in England for years and then this one which is much more interesting to my mind gets dropped!! i will miss both Paul and Digger sorely.

  72. If you have to watch a cooking show (which you do) this program is a great blend of food and origin. Gardening Australia have just said “thank you very much”, now pinching the concept. Further in an era of ratbag TV programs this was one of the only sensibly real, productive and enjoyable shows and Australian at that. Ah well back to travelling Europe with Michael on the train.

  73. It is so unfortunate and sad to lose River Cortage Australia to our ever growing commercial world of heavily edited and scripted shallow television.

    River Cottage Australia was the only Australian programme which was so beautifully based on our authentic and rich Aussie country lifestyle.

    It did a remarkable job of keeping our audience well connected with the natural and organic aspect of nature and this beautiful planet.

    So disappointed to see it go.

  74. Can’t believe it!!! Downloaded and am watching the previous seasons. Have Paul’s cookbook and have tried some recipes. My navy son is home after 12mths and we were looking for SEASON 5. Have subscribed to Foxtel for a decade and can’t believe they do rubbish like GOOGLE BOX over RCA. Disappointed in you Foxtel!
    Good luck Paul and family and the local Tilba and surrounds community. Hope to see a return some time in the future.

  75. Wow, I have just found this show and disappointed that it is not continuing . The idea of creating a small farm in a very lush country environment is breathtaking to watch , not having any cocking abilitity it is dynamic to see all the food that can be source and created from a regional environment and not from the local Coles supermarket.
    Great show!!

  76. I have watched nearly all the seasons, and only found out by googling ‘Paul West’ did I find out that there will be no more ‘River Cottage Australia’…..I’m gutted!! With so much garbage on TV…I looked forward to watching this program……Great show….very disappointed!!!!!!!!!!

  77. I have been a Chef for over 50 years and I loved the show. What a shame it was cancelled.
    Paul you and digger were great!!!

  78. Hi,

    We have only just started watching River Cottage when it went to free to air and are so sorry that its not continuing. So nice to have good honest TV to watch where there is still community spirit and everyone is happy to share their skills. Also loved all the locals. Paul himself is such a personality. We saw him at Brisbane Regional Food and Wine and he is such a character. It was standing room only to hear Paul talk that day. Hopefully one of the free channels will pick him up…the Australian public is crying out for real TV and great home cooking.
    Paul you are a national treasure and we will wait to see who is lucky enough to star you in another show. We loved that cheeky Digger too. Hopefully SBS will continue the seasons that have already been shown on Foxtel.

  79. This makes me so sad. My husband and I absolutely love watching this show and so do our two small children. It was so nice to have an amazing family friendly show to watch. We have learnt so many things along the way to implement with our own veggie patch etc and I love cooking the recipes. This is really disappointing.

  80. Really sad that River Cottage has been shelved, it was a perfect programme for the whole family. I believe that this show was a great encouragement for people to get out there and grow some of their own produce.
    We have also learnt a lot about areas in Australia we have never visited but would now be tempted to go.
    We believe it is very short sighted to shelf this series as it offered so many different interests to different people.

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