A group on 16 diverse countryside bodies, including the Federation of Cumbria Commoners, concerned about the future of English Common Land have jointly written to Minister, Richard Benyon, Parliamentary Under-Secretary at the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, and have had a further letter published in The Times. The Common Land Coalition claims that commons constitute some of England’s finest assets. They point out that there are 7,000 commons in England, covering nearly 400,000ha. Found in all areas from remote uplands to our larges
Askham Bryan College has appointed Julia Aglionby as the first Director of the National Centre for the Uplands to drive forward the College's vision to create a focus for excellence and a national forum for debate on this important sector of agriculture and the countryside.
Geoff Eyre provided a farming perspective from the Peak District and I provided an overview about Emergency Authorisations on the Farming Today programme that was broadcast on BBC Radio 4 at 05:45 this morning. It was hardly earth-shattering stuff, but the programme is available on the BBC iPlayer until 23rd October.
A report by Rose Regeneration and UTASS has revealed how hard pressed farming families are going without food so they can afford to feed their livestock. Cash flow problems have forced many hill farmers in the English uplands to take drastic action – from cutting back on the weekly grocery bill to slashing input costs. The ‘challenges facing farmers’ study was funded by Oxfam and took an in-depth look at the lives of 20 farmers over a nine month period.
The September edition of the Bracken Control Group newsletter is available:
Bracken Control - BBC Radio Wales
The Country Focus programme, broadcast on Radio Wales at 07:00 on Sunday 23 September, included interviews with Mike Davies, while working with a helicopter spraying bracken and with me to provide a national view. We got 12 minutes of coverage and the programme is available on iPlayer until 30 September.
The Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) has published its Rural Statement, billed as ‘a contract to give rural communities the power to hold Government to account on rural growth.’
MOD undertook a public consultation between May and July this year on its proposal to revise two undertakings given in respect of land at Warcop Training Area. The Federation was not invited to take part in the consultation/ comment on the proposals. We heard about it through a solicitor in Appleby after the end of the consultation period.