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Make Hay whilst the weather lasts

May 21, 2012

the weather is turning around this week.  Hadleigh “the pig man” says to start getting your hay in whilst the weather forecast is going upward.  Countryfile forecast looks good for this week.


Rural Economy Grant – Apply now

March 23, 2012

CAMBRIDGESHIRE County Council is urging rural businesses to see if they could benefit from a new £60 million grant scheme announced by the Government.

The Rural Economy Grant scheme allows rural firms to apply for individual grants ranging from £25,000 to £1 million. Visit

Who Can Apply?

The following businesses across England are eligible to apply (please see section 7 of the Applicant Handbook for further details):

  • Farmers
  • Rural based enterprises
  • Forestry contractors
  • Woodland owners
  • Horticultural businesses
  • Rural Growth Networks
  • Not for Profit/ Companies Limited by Guarantee  

Stage 1 Outline Application ROUND 1 TO BE SUBMITTED BY 5.00 pm on the 30 April 2012

It will take some BEETING this year……!!!!

January 1, 2012

Glad that the doom and gloom of last winter is now fully behind us.

With record sugar yields, easy harvesting conditions and a refund of 50% of seed costs.

Beet is back as the backbone of the fenland rotation.

As I have said many more times than I can remember. “Nothing is forever”. 

Beet won’t be as good as this every year, and it certainly won’t be as bad as last year very often.

Lets hope we have some more good years around the corner….!!!

Plough your fields, but don’t scatter the walkers request!

December 16, 2011

Press release from Cambridgeshire County Council


Release date: 15/12/2011

Author: Glenn Thwaites

Keep rights of way clear request to farmers
The County Council’s Rights of Way Team is reminding farmers of their duty to ensure that footpaths and other rights of way are kept clear so users can get out and about to enjoy the Cambridgeshire Countryside.

Dry conditions earlier in the year made it difficult to mark paths after cultivation and drought conditions delayed the growth of some crops, but warm conditions during November have encouraged healthy crop growth and in some places routes have become obscured by winter cereals.

Farmers are being urged to ensure that all paths are kept clear to help keep users on the straight and narrow and ensure they are not scattered across the countryside by using unauthorised routes.

The Rights of Way Team can provide accurate maps and details of recorded routes and also waymarkers to enable farmers to clearly mark the exact route of paths and to help avoid unintended trespass.

County Council Cabinet Member for Community Infrastructure, Councillor Steve Criswell, said: “Clear and clearly marked paths will help keep path users on the straight and (not too) narrow when they are out and about taking healthy exercise to walk off the excess this Christmas.”

For more information on countryside access in Cambridgeshire, go to: or call (01223) 715350.


Hay-you! Don’t miss your chance to become a tenant farmer!

November 11, 2011

Press release from Cambridgeshire County Council

Release date: 10/11/2011

Author: Mark Miller

David King, national tenant spokesman for the NFU, encourages people to look at letting a farm


Four farms to let are up for grabs in Cambridgeshire as part of the County Council’s support of rural jobs and the local economy.David King, national tenant spokesman for the NFU and a third generation tenant farmer in Cambridgeshire, features on a special film to talk about his experiences and encourage prospective candidates to go for it.The farms looking for new tenants next year, 2012, are:
• Ditch Farm, Burwell,
• Lincoln Farm, March
• Middlemere Farm, Soham
• New Farm, Earith

The farms will be open for viewing on the 6th December and the deadline for applications is 23rd December 2011.

Cambridgeshire County Council’s Farms Estate covers 35,000 acres (13,500 ha) with 250 tenants and is the largest of its kind in England and Wales.

The Estate is important in Cambridgeshire’s rural economy, supporting many small buisinesses and provides funding for wider Council services as well as an important first rung on the ladder for new entrants to farming. It also helps protect the local unique countryside and environment as well as provide leisure opportunities in the countryside.

Prudent management of the estate since 1993 has enabled £51 million to be released to be spent on delivering council priorities.

The estate has been used to open public access to the countryside with miles of new bridleways and footpaths. It has also improved the landscape with new woods and hedges as well as protecting biodiversity and archaeology.

Cambridgeshire County Councillor Steve Count said: “These four farms represent an amazing opportunity for someone to start a small rural business and get their foot on the ladder of a career in agriculture. The farms estate is important to the County Council in that it provides careers and boosts the local rural economy as well as protecting the environment. I would urge anyone to listen to what David has to say and maybe soon you could become his neighbour.”

Anyone interested should look at the Council’s website 
or call 01223 699095.


Wild Bird Seed Mix – how to do it…

October 11, 2011

….Expert advice coming to a farm near you!

Experts from Kings and the RSPB invite you to a series of events where you can get advice on the establishment, management, and agronomic and environmental benefits of wild bird seed mix.w

ardship and CFE.

Tues 1 Nov Halls Farm, Guyhirn, PE13 4AD

Tues 8 Nov Grapnell’s Farm, Wallasea, SS4 2HD

Weds 9 Nov Green Farm, Prickwillow, CB7 4UN

Thur 10 Nov Priory Farm, Needingworth, PE27 4NE

All events run 10.30am – 1.30pm, lunch and refreshments provided


Richard Barnes, Game Cover & Conservation Crops Manager, Kings

Simon Tonkin, Senior FarmlandConservation Officer, RSPB

Niki Williamson, Fenland Farmland Bird Adviser, RSPB

Frank Vargas, Essex Farmland Bird, Adviser, RSPB


Booking essential:,  01603 697500

Barclays Launches £100 Million Energy Fund for Farmers

September 6, 2011

Barclays Bank has created a £100 million fund designed to help farmers meet the costs of renewable energy initiatives like wind farms, solar panels, organic waste power and hydro plants.
Research undertaken by the bank has revealed that agricultural businesses are now keen to benefit from government support tariffs. More than a third of farmers would like to install renewable energy projects on their land during the coming year, and hope to generate average annual returns of £25,000.
Britain aims to generate 15% of energy from renewable sources by 2020, compared with 7.4% reached in 2010.

The Barclays survey of 300 agricultural customers indicated that four out of five farmers recognise how renewable energy can save costs and 60% see it as a source of additional income.
The funding provider expects around 80-90% of projects will be solar and wind farms as they are cheapest to build and their costs are forecast to drop by up to 50% in the next three to five years as demand rises and technology improves. Barclays states that the cost of installing renewable energy projects can be recovered after around ten years.
The fund’s loan budget will be unlimited and it has been suggested that the first £100 million could support more than 100 projects as the average cost varies between £250,000 and £700,000.

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