The former Emmerdale and Strictly Come Dancing champion now runs his own farm in the Peak District, where his challenges as a novice farmer were documented in the BBC One series Kelvin’s Big Farming Adventure.
Kelvin swapped city life in Oldham for a post-lockdown rural lifestyle when he and wife Liz bought their 120-acre farm, which they share with daughter Marnie, son Milo and newborn twins.
In his new role with the Peak District National Park Foundation, Kelvin will champion his conservation and engagement work and help share his vision of a national park enjoyed and preserved by all.
He said: “The Peak District Foundation is a cause close to my heart – and my role as an ambassador is a real connection. I live in the Peak District, with a young and growing family, and for a long time I was an urban visitor, a walker in the National Park.
“I’ve always had a great fondness for the outdoors and have spent a lot of time walking, not just in the Peak District, but across the country. The Peak District, to me, represents the north – and I am a very, very proud northerner. For us it’s the best of both worlds – beautiful countryside surrounded by some great towns and villages. I think it’s the perfect location.
Kelvin is currently commuting between his farm and the National Theater in London, where he is in rehearsal for the comedy Jack Absolute Flies Again. Production runs from July to September.
He adds, “Life on the farm is busy and tough, but it’s one of the quietest times, when maintenance and field work takes place.
“My understanding of farming and the countryside has increased a hundredfold over the past 12 to 18 months. I have a very enthusiastic and inquisitive nature – and once you figure something out, appreciation follows.
“The Peak District wouldn’t look so beautiful if it hadn’t been for farmers. It changes with the seasons – with new colors and textures throughout the year.
“The land must be managed with balance. We must welcome people and also be respectful of animal husbandry and agriculture. Part of my land is a public footpath and if someone doesn’t close the gates or litter there are consequences.
“I see it from both sides. I’m now an owner but I’ve also been a visitor, so I know how important it is to find that balance.
“We must provide constant care – we are only the current custodians of the national park, watching over it for future generations. We all have a responsibility, not just as landowners, but as visitors and participants.
Sarah Slowther, fundraising development manager for the foundation, said, “We are delighted to welcome Kelvin as our newest ambassador. He really shares our enthusiasm for the Peak District.
“Kelvin takes a genuine interest in our conservation projects and our work to restore nature and improve biodiversity. And, like us, he is passionate about connecting people to nature and providing opportunities for communities surrounding the Peak District to improve their well-being by enjoying the National Park.