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Stackyard News Jul 09

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Professional Help for Farm Tenancy Entrants

New entrants are set to benefit from the Tenant Farmers Association (TFA) and Savills’ expertise following confirmation of Defra funding for the National Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs’ (NFYFC) regional tenancy training events.

Young farmers take part in a fence erecting competition at the Royal Show 2009.

fence erecting competition

Successfully piloted last year, the training events were initially developed to help new entrants secure tenancies and support the NFYFC’s Farm Business Development Competition sponsored by the TFA and supported by Defra and Savills.

TFA chief executive George Dunn and Savills’ director Clive Beer have worked with NFYFC to address issues for new entrant tenancy training.

TFA Chief Executive George Dunn said: “The TFA has been proud sponsors of the National Farm Business Development Competition for five years and as a judge on the panel I have seen the quality of entry improve year on year. The addition of Clive Beer from Savills to the judging panel has been enormously beneficial in helping to raise the standards and in identifying areas of weakness which we can now follow up with specific training. The competition, backed by good quality training, provides a great platform for success for anyone looking to gain entry to the industry through an agricultural tenancy.”

Savills director Clive Beer commented: "Undoubtedly, one of the biggest hurdles facing new entrants to farming is the tenancy application. We are delighted to be involved in this extremely valuable initiative for young farmers and Defra's funding is a much welcomed endorsement of what we are hoping to achieve."

Cornwall YFC’s Jo Maynard, who was placed third in the competition, found the exercise helpful for her career as a surveyor. She commented that clients often asked for help with the preparation of tender documents but from the perspective of running systems not creating ideas or tackling the interview process. The competition had provided her with a stronger awareness of interview questions and she would now be better placed to advise clients on how to respond. Both Jo and her competition partner Andrew Ham had learnt from the business planning and cost analysis exercise as well as the interview process.

She concluded by saying that she thought the competition had been invaluable for new entrants into farming. She would be spreading the word to members in her county to take advantage of future training opportunities.

Agriculture and rural affairs officer Sarah Palmer added: “NFYFC is delighted to be working with our industry partners to deliver comprehensive training that will not only help those taking part in the competition, but also puts members in a very strong position to secure future farming opportunities.”

Details of dates and venues for the regional events will be confirmed later this year.

The National Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs (NFYFC) is one of the largest youth organisations in the UK. It heads a nationwide body of 659 Young Farmers’ Clubs (YFCs) located throughout England and Wales dedicated to supporting young people in agriculture and the countryside. Their memberships comprise more than 22,000 members aged 10 to 26 and they provide a unique opportunity for members to develop skills, work with the local community, travel abroad, take part in a varied competitions programme and enjoy a dynamic social life. There are a further 1,100 associate members, many of whom are involved in the running of the clubs and NFYFC. For more information about NFYFC, visit

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