Mum-of-19 with 14 grandchildren has five washing machines, three driers & still can’t believe she had more than two kids

BRITAIN’S biggest family, the Radfords, have gained a legion of fans who follow their daily life with 22 kids. 

But across the pond, the Bates family in Tennessee is American’s answer to the Radford brood. 

Tree surgeon Gil, 55, and Kelly, 53, have 19 children – nine sons and ten daughters – and have even landed a TV show based on their whopping family. 

They got married when Gil was 22 and Kelly was 21, in 1987, and first child, Zach, arrived a year later.

And they’ve certainly kept busy over the years. 

They now have Zach, 31, Michaella, 30, Erin, 29, William, 28, Nathan, 26, Alyssa, 25, Tori, 24, Trace, 23, Carlin, 22, Josie, 20, Katie, 19, Jackson, 18, Warden, 17, Isiah, 15, Addallee, 14, Ellie, 13, Callie-Anna, 10, Jud, nine, and Jeb, eight.

None of the pregnancies have been twins, and Kelly has had no C-sections and 14 drug-free births at home. 

They welcomed their latest (and perhaps last) arrival in 2012 when Kelly was 45 years old – by which point she’d spent more of her adult life pregnant than not.

The couple are Christians and decided to not use contraception due to their faith – but they never expected they’d end up with so many kids. 

Speaking to ABC in 2011, they said: “We both came to the conclusion that we just want to trust God with how many children we have.

"We never really thought we'd have 18 [now 19].

"We thought we'd have maybe one or two – maybe three.”

Despite being a family-of-21, the Bates live in a five-bedroom home in Lake City. 

The 4,000 sq ft home comes with a staggering five washing machines and three clothes driers to keep up with the large volume of laundry. 

And for storage, the family keep their clothes on rails that stretch the length of the loft room.

Which, unlike most of us with our over-sized wardrobes, they actually need – a simple two-day camping trip means bringing 56 outfits.

Feeding the family is also a gargantuan task as they rattle through 56 pints of milk and nine loaves of bread a week, while a takeaway meal consists of 10 large pizzas.

The Christian couple ban TV, limit internet access, and keep their household running smoothly by insisting on teamwork.

Kelly has assigned each of the older children to a younger kid.

She told ABC News: “They get themselves ready first. They help make sure that their partner has their hair brushed, shoes on, and their teeth brushed.”

The children are also responsible for making sure their room is tidy, and they’re each given a task that’s rotated monthly (unsurprisingly, no one ever wants to be in charge of laundry!).

And any parents struggling with homeschooling under lockdown should take pointers from the Bates family – they’ve done it with all ten girls and nine boys!

Kelly said: “Find out what helps you deal with frustrations. Whether it’s take a break, or go outside for a walk together, but make it a fun experience for your kids.”

Like the Radfords, the family have racked up a large fan base, and this is partly due to being in their ninth season of TV show Bringing Up Bates.

Their family has now grown far beyond their own own kids too, as seven of the Bates children are married.

Gil and Kelly now have 14 grandchildren aged between five years and four months old.

Meanwhile, Sue and Noel Radford have three grandchildren, daughter Sophie's kids – Daisy, seven, Ayprill, five, and Leo, four. Their daughter Millie, 18, is expecting a baby in September.

In other news, Britain’s biggest family the Radfords show off their amazing garden makeover designed to keep the kids clean.

Also read about the ‘World’s strongest baby’ who can stand on her own at EIGHT WEEKS – and was holding up her head before she even left hospital.

And finally, read about the neighbour who demands mum only lets toddler out for 15mins a day as his giggling upsets the dogs in brutal note.

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