Cato Poll Herefords is owned by Jonathan and Rosemary Moorhouse. The herd takes its name from their daughter Kate, whose nickname is Cato. Kate and her brother Edward have taken a keen interest in their parents’ farm all their lives, though their careers have taken them in different directions. The family’s farming career began in Crediton in Devon before moving to Lower Preston Farm in Stogumber, which became home to Cato Poll Herefords in 1995.
In January 2016, the herd was relocated to a new home at Cheddarmarsh Farm, just a couple of miles from their previous home; where they settled in well and have flourished for several years.
In 2018, Jonathan Moorhouse held the prestigious title of Hereford Breed President for the Hereford Cattle Society and his herd, Cato Poll Herefords was judged Best Herd in the South West. Jonathan is passionate about the Hereford breed and oversaw a number of initiatives and events throughout his year as president, including judging at many of shows around the UK.
Cato Poll Herefords is registered with the Hereford Cattle Society and comprises a herd of around 40 cows and a total of 100 cattle, which benefits from the extensive knowledge of rearing and genetics that the Moorhouse family has gained over thirty years of working with the breed. The farm is located in West Somerset, close to the Quantock Hills, in the beautiful hamlet of Kingswood, Stogumber.
The original purchase of heifers from Miss Anne Humbert in Stockbridge, Hampshire, made up a large part of the herd initially. Anne Humbert was retiring and her Kiwi Herd was such a good purchase with three families descending from her cattle dominating the Cato Poll Herefords herd.
As dairy farmers, the Moorhouse family had always had a Hereford bull, though fashion was not with Herefords at that time. Beef production would come around to realize the merits of Hereford cattle with their easy temperament, hardiness and ability to convert grass into meat. In addition, the markings and colouring cannot be confused with any other breed so they are easily recognisable. The image of the breed has become to be as important as the beef it produces.
Cato Poll Herefords are Farm Assured and certified by the Scottish Agricultural College Herd Health Scheme CHeCS (Cattle Health Certification Standards).