Warwickshire Rural Hub
Farmers are making significant improvements to the environment
The Campaign for the Farmed Environment has found that farmers in their snapshot survey were making significant improvements to the environment. 535 farmers were interviewed and the CFE found that 90% had improved soil management, 81% were using pesticides and fertiliser more efficiently and 73% had adopted nutrient management.
New EU Organic Regulation
Following five years of debate, MEPs have approved the new regulation on organic production and labelling of organic products. The new EU law is intended to improve the quality of organic food in the EU and also help to address the needs of a fast-growing organic market. The regulation will now go to Council where it is expected to be signed off next month and it will enter into force in January 2021.
Plant nurseries to be covered by agricultural exemption for business rates
The Minister for Local Government has confirmed that plant nurseries will be covered under the agricultural exemption for business rates, in line with other agricultural businesses.
Are you a rural business working in an off mains area of Warwickshire?
Then the Warwickshire Rural Community Council Energy Scheme may be for you. It is open to individuals and rural organisations alike.
The scheme aims to create collective purchasing power and keep prices at an affordable level for users. Membership is open to all in Warwickshire – whether you’re an individual householder, a community group or a business – and it’s free to join.
To find out more visit their website.
Future Farming Support
At the 2018 Oxford Farming Conference the Secretary of State set out four areas where he wants to drive change for farming:
1. Developing a coherent policy on food, integrating the needs of agriculture businesses, other enterprises, consumers, public health and the environment.
2. Giving farmers and land managers time and the tools to adapt to the future, so as to avoid a precipitate cliff edge but also prepare properly for the changes which are coming.
3. Develop a new method of providing financial support for farmers which moves away from ‘subsidies for inefficiency’ to public money for public goods.
4. Ensure that natural capital thinking is built into the government’s approach towards land use and management, so as develop a truly sustainable future for our countryside.
A government consultation is expected.
England is now an Avian Influenza Prevention Zone
As from 18 January 2018 England has been declared an Avian Influenza Prevention Zone and all keepers of poultry and other captive birds are required to follow prescribed bio-security measures. Keepers of over 500 birds are required to follow enhanced measures.
To view the measures please use the link below.
Government publishes 25 year Environmental Plan
The Government has published their long-awaited 25 year Environmental Plan. The plan sets out goals for improving the environment, within a generation, and leaving it in a better state. It details how government will work with communities and businesses to do this. It sets out what government will be doing over the next 25 years.
To access the plan please use the website link below.
If you want to receive updates on the 25 Year Plan to Improve the Environment, please register as a stakeholder, using the link below.
Information on the new TB Advisory Service
The TB Advisory Service has been set up to enable cattle keepers to access specialist advice on building resilience to bovine tuberculosis (bTB). The service is fully-funded by Defra through the Rural Development Programme for England (RDPE), and is available to farmers in the High Risk and Edge areas of England. Eligible farmers will receive bespoke advice on biosecurity and the risks associated with cattle movements and trading.
If any eligible farmers would like to register for the service please visit their website to register some details including your CPH and SBI numbers.
Smart Farming Guide on launching a farming business
The YFC Smart Farming Guide is a new free business guide offering essential advice on how to get a farming business started. It was created in response to demand from young farmers who wanted more support for starting successful farming business ventures. This mobile-friendly, online guide will be continually updated with information during a time of unprecedented change.
Highlights of the guide include:
• Case studies from successful farming entrepreneurs
• Advice on the types of finance available.
• Risk analysis and business protection advice.
• A resources section with links to wider business support.
Use the link below to access the guide.
ITC Business Support from the Chamber of Commerce
Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce has launched its new ICT Business Support service, funded through European Regional Development Funding and working in partnership with Warwickshire County Council. The Chamber will be providing a package of ICT support for SMEs (Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises) across Coventry and Warwickshire that includes specialist 1:1 advice, a range of masterclasses and workshops, and funding towards implementing Superfast Broadband.
To find out more please call Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber.
Farm Carbon Cutting Toolkit looking for farmers
The Farm Carbon Cutting Toolkit aims to quantify which management practices work best to improve carbon storage in soil. The project, which has been kindly funded by the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation, will allow for much needed data to be collected on soil carbon sequestration whilst at the same time enabling farmers to play a positive role in the development of effective climate change mitigation mechanisms. For further information please contact Becky Wilson.
Seven out of eight farmers voluntarily manage their land for the environment
According to a survey by the Campaign for the Farmed Environment seven out of eight farmers voluntarily manage their land for the benefit of the environment whilst farming productively. In 2015/16 nearly 10,000 hectares were farmed under voluntary CFE measures. Farmers have also put up 17,343 metres of fencing to keep stock out of watercourses, preventing bank erosion and improving water quality.
Free on-line training courses on a huge range of subjects
Future Learn is an on-line portal that offers free of charge training courses in a huge range of subjects including the environment and business management. The courses are run by leading universities and specialist organisations from the UK and further afield and typically require a commitment of approximately 4 hours/week for 3 – 6 weeks, all from the comfort of your own home. At the end of the course there is opportunity to purchase a certificate at the end of the course.
To view the range of courses and register your interest visit the website below.
Register to be notified when superfast broadband is available
The extension of the fibre broadband network through the CSW Broadband project is going well, with many communities that could never have hoped to achieve superfast speeds under the commercial providers’ programmes now connected to the information superhighway.
All residents interested in learning when superfast broadband is available in their area are urged to register their details with the project by completing the form at: www.cswbroadband.org.uk/register
The site also contains a wealth of information about the rollout of superfast broadband, along with a checker map that goes right down to property level!
Get advice on pesticide safety
April is the beginning of the sowing and spraying season and these activities present their own safety risks. If you are using pesticides check the Health and Safety Executive’s code of practice for advice on how to take precautions when storing, handling, using, keeping records and disposing of pesticides and pesticide waste.
Remember to consider felling licences
Please consider if a felling licence is required from the Forestry Commission before felling trees.
If in doubt please contact Mr Paul Webster, Woodland Officer, Forestry Commission
Grandfather Rights no longer exist
The current exemption for people born before December 31st 1964 for using Plant Protective Products (PPP) authorised for professional use (Grandfather Rights), came to an end on 26th November 2015. Anyone using PPPs for professional use will have to have a Certificate of Competence from a recognised body. This includes use on crops, land, produce, materials and buildings which are owned, occupied or rented by them or their employer.
It is an offence to purchase PPP’s authorised for professional use unless the purchaser has ensured that the intended end user has a certificate. Existing certificates of competence (for example, PA2 and PA6) will remain valid under the new legislation. Anyone who already has one of these will need to do nothing new.
Consider becoming a retained firefighter
Warwickshire County Council’s Fire and Rescue Service are urging local businesses to step up to the challenge and think about releasing a member of their staff to become a retained firefighter.
Currently, there are over 100 retained firefighters in Warwickshire, responding to the call to keep our communities safe. However, many more are needed, to provide cover at our retained stations during the day, nights and weekends.
No previous experience is needed, but common sense, self-motivation, compassion and the ability to work as part of a team is essential. Any potential candidates must also live or work within five minutes travel time of their nearest fire station and be over 18.
For more information on what it could mean for your business, then log onto www.warwickshire.gov.uk/beextraordinary or call the retained recruitment team on 01926 852223 for an initial chat.
Full details about being a retained firefighter can be found at http://apps.warwickshire.gov.uk/api/documents/WCCC-844-147
Tree health information
The Forestry Commission Tree Health Newsletter is available with disease updates on Ash, Larch, and Sweet Chestnut, as well as information on the Tree health team, events, funding, and how people can get involved. If you haven’t already signed up click http://www.forestry.gov.uk/pestsanddiseases to sign up.
Common land registers: how to register and deregister common land
Guidance is available at the website below to help you understand the status of common land and how to add or remove commons and greens from the commons register.
Sign up to FAS services
To register for FREE text message updates from FAS, please call 0345 345 1302 or email firstname.lastname@example.org with ‘Register for text updates’ in the subject line. Remember to include your name and mobile phone number in the message. Your details will not be shared with any third parties.
FAS is on Twitter. Follow us on @DefraFAS for up-to-the-minute updates on publications, events and industry information.
To receive further copies of the FREE bi-monthly FAS newsletter, please call 0345 345 1302 or email email@example.com with ‘Register for newsletter’ in the subject line.
Protecting your soils post-harvest
Under the cross compliance rule, Good Agricultural and Environmental Condition (GAEC 5), there is a requirement to have minimum land management that reflects site-specific conditions to limit erosion. It is important that you select the correct post-harvest options to ensure that land harvested by a combine harvester or mower is left in a state where erosion is unlikely. The new rules for soils are applicable to all Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) claimants and certain Pillar II claimants. If you require further advice regarding soil management on your farm, please contact FAS on 0345 345 1302 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Warwickshire Community Resource database
Warwickshire Community Resource is a FREE database which enables organisations in Warwickshire to swap, share and trade resources for low cost or no cost rates. The database is available to all organisations big or small and open to the voluntary and community sector, statutory sector, businesses and social enterprises.
To register, click on the link below and download a membership application form.
Calling All Warwickshire Businesses – Want to Save Money By Recycling?
Warwickshire County Council offers commercial waste and recycling services at the majority of its household waste recycling centres across Warwickshire.
For more information or to apply for a recycling permit please visit the website below or to purchase bags or to use the pay-as-you-throw service please visit the recycling centre.
Stocktake – a benchmarking service for all English levy payers
Do you know your costs of production? How does your performance compare to others? Would you like data to help you improve your efficiency and returns? Why not consider using Stocktake, a secure benchmarking service which is open to all English levy payers at no extra cost.
If you are a commercial beef or sheep farmer and are interested, then please contact Richard Meredith.
Follow Farming Advice Service on Twitter or sign up for free newsletters
FAS is on Twitter. Follow them on @DefraFAS for up-to-the-minute updates on publications, events and industry information.
Alternatively you can subscribe to the free FAS Newsletter. To receive further copies of the FREE FAS newsletter which is provided every two months, please call the number below or send an email with ‘Register for newsletter’ in the subject line.
Download the EBLEX mobile app for beef and sheep farmers
An app by EBLEX makes it easier for beef and sheep farmers to get the latest market information at their fingertips. As well as the latest prices and trends the new mobile app gives farmers the opportunity to search for their nearest auction markets and create their own personal library of technical manuals.
The app is available free on both Apple and Android platforms. The visit the app store or Google Play store and search for “EBLEX”.
HMRC Tax Help factsheets offer valuable information on many tax matters. They are easy to download, save and/or print.
Visit the website below for more information.
Chose the right wormer with Cattle and Sheep Parasite Control Guide
Internal parasites pose a significant threat to animal health and performance. Therefore choosing the correct wormer is vital. EBLEX has updated its easy to read parasite control guide which lists more than 100 cattle and 70 sheep products to help farmers make the right choice.
Download your guide from the link below or call the number for a hard copy.
HMRC webinars on a variety of tax issues
HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has produced a set of online seminars – ‘webinars’ – both live and pre-recorded, to help customers to understand a variety of tax systems and learn what obligations they need to meet.
Live webinars are available on set dates at set times. You need to register in advance for a live webinar, but the session is then recorded and made available to view after the event.
Live webinars last for an hour, they are interactive giving you the opportunity to ask questions and get answers from your HMRC webinar host.
Registering is quick and easy – simply provide your name and email address, choose the topic you are interested in and the date and time that suit you best. You will then receive an email with a link to view the webinar.
Tip: log in at least five minutes before the start time, to make sure the software needed for the webinar downloads to your computer in plenty of time.
You don’t need to register for a pre-recorded webinar – they are available to view now, or whenever suits you. Simply choose the topic you are interested in, then follow the link to start viewing the webinar.
Would you Like to
Donate to the Hub?
A donation to the Hub of any amount is always gratefully received. However, it is only donations of over £100 that can be acknowledged on the Hub website as a Champion. A donation can be given to the Hub by cheque, bank payment, standing order or by the Paypal Link Below.
The Warwickshire Rural Hub CIC
c/o Pleasance Farm
Registration No: 7026157
Registered office: 23 West Bar Street, Banbury, OX16 9SA
Rural Hub Co-ordinator
Tel: 07780 159291
Warwickshire Rural Hub CIC Directors
Henry Lucas (Hub Chairman)
Graham Collier (Hub Deputy Chairman)
Hub Steering Group Members
Luke Ryder, NFU
Mark Dickin, Ellacotts Accountants
Susan Lewis, S2M Marketing
Tom Newbery, Highfield Farm
Mark Meadows, Tithe Farm
Alexandra Robinson, Wright Hassall LLP
Bob Slater, Slater Farm Management Services
Chris Tallis, Tallis Amos Group
Jef Tuyn, Agricultural Consultant
Matt Willmott, King's Seeds
John Slee, Abbey Farm
The Warwickshire Rural Hub accepts no liability for any direct, indirect or consequential loss arising from any action taken in reliance on the information contained on this website.
© 2018 Warwickshire Rural Hub. All rights reserved.