Browsing: Farming

Lessons in farm safety to save lives and boost mental and physical wellbeing have been offered to Bicton College’s newest agriculture students. The college teamed up with the Farm Safety Foundation on Wednesday (October 9) in a bid to encourage young farmers aged between 16 and 40 to think about their physical and mental wellbeing, in the hope of decreasing accidents and saving lives. Farm safety training included scenarios based on potential accidents caused by machinery, livestock, working at height and forklifts. Mock accident scenes were set up around the college’s working farm with students spending time dealing with each…

A multi-agency campaign has been launched to tackle the problem of ‘cold calling’ criminals at farms. Devon and Cornwall Police, Devon’s Trading Standards Service and leading rural insurer NFU Mutual have come together to help protect farmers from would-be thieves who stake out farms looking for valuables. Such criminals can be very insistent and intimidating, and may be scoping out the layout of the farm trying to spot items worth stealing – Police NFU Mutual’s annual rural crime report revealed that the theft of agricultural vehicles cost the UK £7.4 million in 2018, with quad/ATV thefts costing £2.6 million; an…

Devon and Cornwall Police are highlighting the work that goes on all year to prevent rural crime and to safeguard landowners, farmers, the public and animals in our countryside communities. Rural Affairs Officer PC Martin Beck will work with neighbourhood teams across Devon and with the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for engagement events. At any time of the year, not just during this week where we focus on rural issues, we would urge the public in our rural communities, whether they are farmers or members of the public, to stay in touch with us and what we…

Brexit threatens to throw a spanner in Devon’s financial works – if the Government fails to come up with firm proposals for a scheme to replace EU funding, it has been revealed. The county currently receives more than £150m a year in EU funding and Devon County Council is backing calls, led by the the Local Government Association (LGA), for the Government to urgently consult on its plans for a scheme to replace the funding after Brexit. At the moment it’s impossible to plan for the longer term with any certainty, which is why we need to know more about…

https://youtu.be/9gr7ocGS9So We’re used to buying fizzy drinks, sweets and crisps from vending machines, but what about fresh milk? Clinton Dairy in East Devon has set up a 24/7 milk vending machine at the popular Otterton Mill visitor centre, less than 2km away, in an effort to reduce food miles, waste, and connect the farm with the local community. By cutting out the middle man and reducing food miles, the milk will be as environmentally friendly at it gets and raise the profile of organic farming, which prioritises animal welfare – Barney Tremaine Customers using the Clinton Dairy vending machine, which…

A new report from the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee, led by Tiverton and Honiton MP Neil Parish, has highlighted the continuing digital divide between urban and rural areas. The connectivity differences, even between rural towns and sparser communities, are the cause of ‘frustration’, it states. Given the continued challenges posed to rural businesses and communities, the Committee is not confident that the Government has fully grasped the extent of the problem, the scale of the challenge, or the wider cost of poor connectivity for the rural economy – report Doubts have been expressed about ambitious Government targets set…

An established dairy farm near Axminster can develop a purpose-built slurry lagoon, planners have determined. Bagley Hill Farm needs the facility to meet current and future needs, and to improve slurry storage in a Catchment Sensitive Farming Area. A purpose-built lagoon will enable the farm to improve the way it manages waste and reduce the likelihood of pollution. The application, which was granted delegated approval, was supported by Axminster Town Council and the district’s ward member, Councillor Andrew Moulding. A planning officer’s report explains the application met requirements for development in open countryside. The lagoon is proposed for a vicinity…

The Government is being urged to delay its planned phasing out of farm support payments following its decision not to carry forward the current version of the Agriculture Bill into the next session of Parliament. Farm support payments were due to be phased out from 2021, but NFU President Minette Batters has said it is ‘unreasonable’ to continue to plan for the phasing out of the current system on the present timetable. The proposed new system was based on the UK leaving the EU in an orderly fashion in March 2019, entering a stable transition period for at least two…

Sidmouth Junction ploughing match is taking place today in virtually perfect weather conditions. By kind permission of the Seward family, the historic event is being staged at Fairmile – on the Exeter side of the A30. With competitions taking place most of the day, the event is open to the public and includes a ploughing demonstration and ‘lucky’ programme. First staged in 1834, the the ploughing match was driven by Sir Edward Drewe. Back then, prizes were even handed out to the farm worker with the largest family. The first tractor class was introduced in 1936. However, horse ploughs were…

A farmer from East Devon has been named the winner of the prestigious Devon Bronze Otter Award. Phil Short, of Chubbs Farm, near Axminster, received the award for the ‘remarkable and innovative conservation work’ he is undertaking on his 220 acres. Run by the Farming and Wildlife Advisory Group (FWAG), the competition was open to any farm with good conservation practices. The award showcases the long-term commitment to wildlife conservation and sustainable farming. Its scope includes advice on soil management, countryside stewardship, natural flood management, and renewable energy. The group also helps with assurance schemes, compliance, woodland creation, and farm…

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