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Keeping his neighbours smiling . . . Trotter’s Gorge farmer Archie Kennedy has been posting tasteful daily pictures on his Facebook site during the lockdown. PHOTO: STEPHEN JAQUIERY

It was a cheeky idea.

Archie Kennedy was drenching sheep on the first day of lockdown when he whipped off his clothes and suggested his wife, Lucy, take a photograph.

He posted it on Facebook and the response was so overwhelming that he decided to do a naked farmer post every day of the four-week lockdown.

Whether mustering on horseback or putting the rams out, routine rural tasks have been documented in his birthday suit.

For it was business as usual for the couple, who farm a 740ha sheep and beef property near Palmerston, and the outbreak had reinforced the importance of farmers, Mr Kennedy said.

“We haven’t had a day off since it started because it’s quite a busy time of year for us.”

He was also inspired by his sister Megan Martin, from Christchurch, who created Live Up To You, which encouraged people to take control of their health and wellbeing, one little step at a time.

“I can’t stand all the … rubbish on TV … it’s not hard to think of something fun, is it? A lot of people have said it’s made their day.”

Mr Kennedy, who reckoned mutton chops, potatoes and the odd bottle of DB beer kept him in “fine shape” for his foray into nude modelling, hinted there could be a naked shearing record attempt.

“I think every Tom, Dick and Harry does a shearing record these days. I think I’ll have a good blast at it.”

Aside from missing playing squash and a previously planned hunting and fishing trip to Stewart Island, Mr Kennedy was content with lockdown life — and his naked exploits.

“I’m actually really enjoying it. I think I’ll take it on full-time next summer. A couple of weeks ago, I would have got arrested and now I’m just living the dream.”