Farmers and farm managers across England are invited to enter
Natural England’s 2008 Future of Farming Awards.
The award scheme, which opens on Monday 7 April, recognises and
celebrates farmers in England who have integrated wildlife, landscape
and access management with more sustainable farming production
on their farms. The awards are being actively supported by the
farming industry with input from the CLA, NFU and TFA.
The inventor of a revolutionary new way of collecting and sowing
wild seeds to help restore medieval hay meadows in Sussex was the
2007 Future of Farming Award winner. Keith
Datchler of the Beech
Estate, near Battle, East Sussex won the award for his work for
both running a successful farm business and for protecting a precious
yet threatened habitat that supports a rich mix of native wildlife,
including wildflowers, butterflies and other rare insects.
The achievements of the 2007 finalists will be featured at Natural
England’s stand at this year’s Royal Show.
The selection process for the award is designed so that no particular
type or acreage of farm is favoured. The assessment looks at how
well farming practices are tailored to benefit the wildlife, landscape
and access opportunities of the farm. The contribution the farm
makes to economic and social sustainability of the local area is
also taken into account. This year farmers can apply for the award
by completing a short on-line application form. Alternatively the
form can be completed by a Natural England adviser on behalf of
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