BY ROGER WATSON I have just spent one of several weeks this year working in Italy. As with most countries I visit regularly, after initial impressions are over about similarities and differences, once you get to know more people and to know them in depth, you appreciate more of the differences and begin to understand at least part of what makes Italians the way they … Continue reading Have We Lost Our Link to the Land?
BY JIM WEBSTER Whilst my time in agriculture has been a time of impressive change, I suspect that the industry has been moving so quickly that every generation born since 1900 will be able to say that. I started my life working alongside men who’d been in farm work in the 1920s and 1930s. They were horsemen but I just missed that era. But being … Continue reading Moving to Mechanisation
BY JIM WEBSTER Whilst people are trapped by the virus, agriculture continues to march to the beat of a different drum. Almost certainly having had the virus means that here we’re mentally in a different place to a lot of people but I went into town yesterday and had to go into one establishment to deal with a couple of issues. I’m somebody who hasn’t … Continue reading A World Apart
BY JIM WEBSTER It must be admitted that we were ready for this rain. As it was we’d neatly ricocheted from one extreme to another. This winter was ridiculously wet. We never had flooding as such up here in Cumbria, but there was standing water where the water table was now higher than ground level. So if we were ever going to get any spring … Continue reading Glorious Rain
BY QUENTIN PIGG How can one reconcile the two seemingly opposing ideologies of deindustrialisation and a want for endless housing? The answer: when the former is merely a means to bring about the latter. It’s no secret that climate change activism often acts as a front for hard-line socialism; indeed, the Extinction Rebellion protests held in London were marred by blood red demands to ‘bring … Continue reading Farmers, New Enemy of Loons
BY BEN EVERITT Don’t believe the doom-mongers. Our farmers and our environment can thrive after Brexit. Have a beer with a farmer. Like everyone else, farmers have got concerns about a no-deal Brexit. But after a pint or two you’ll learn just how much the EU has screwed agricultural economics. A clean break can’t come soon enough. The system is now so complex that the … Continue reading Fear Not, Farmers
BY BEN EAGLE It’s now under a month to go until we all revel in the Christmas festivities (those of us who celebrate Christmas at any rate, which is most people in this country). It will almost be time to wave goodbye to 2017, which, with my hat on at least, has not been the most optimistic of years, particularly it seems as it draws … Continue reading View From the Countryside
BY BEN EAGLE On the 18th July this year 33-year-old Devon farmer Todd Riggs was killed in a farm accident. He had been trapped under a trailer and despite the efforts of the emergency services Mr Riggs lost his life. Unfortunately this case is far from unique. Agriculture tops the charts when it comes to the rate of people fatally injured as a result of … Continue reading How Many More Must Die?