Rural News

Rural News

It’s all change for life on the Edge

Eleven months of the year Beacon Hill Farm is devoted to tractors, combine harvesters, the growing of wheat, barley and oilseed rape but from next weekend it makes an annual transformation into its now better known alias as Woolley Edge Christmas Tree Farm – and it’s also when livestock numbers increase from nought to two.

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Sue Woodall, who runs the campaigning organisation Ladies In Pigs. Picture by Jonathan Gawthorpe.

Pork champion Sue to step aside after 10 years

“It’s the best job I’ve ever had,” says Sue Woodall about her role as the chairwoman of Ladies in Pigs. “But now is the time to step aside and let someone else take the reins.

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Kate Dale, co-ordinator of the Yorkshire Rural Support Network.

The show always goes on to support community

The Yorkshire Agricultural Society is best known for organising the Great Yorkshire Show every July. For those three days, over 130,000 visitors converge on the showground and we are often asked afterwards, what we do for the remaining 362 days of the year?

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Pictures by Robert E Fuller.

Wildlife artist goes in the footsteps of fantastic Mr Fox

Late one winter’s evening as I was driving home from a long day out watching owls, I noticed something moving by a straw stack. I stopped my car in time to see a fox slinking round the back of the stack.

Analysis
Read Julian Norton's weekly column first, in Country Week every Saturday, only in your weekend edition of The Yorkshire Post. Picture by James Hardisty.

Julian Norton: Nightshade worries for Bert

Evening surgery had finished and another busy day was drawing to a close. Since I was on call, it fell to me to deal with the list of telephone messages that had accumulated during evening surgery.

Analysis
Stephen and Karen Thompson from Povey Farm & Moss Valley Fine Meats, an award winning farm and butchery in Eckington near Sheffield. Pictures by Scott Merrylees.

Roll of the dice that has paid off for the Thompsons

Gambling was rumoured to be the reason for the sale of Povey Farm situated near the village of Norton between Dronfield and Sheffield in the nineteenth century, but it was an all together more calculated risk Stephen and Karen Thompson took a decade ago that has seen their 240-acre pigs and arable farm become lauded by many, recently seeing them take The Yorkshire Post’s inaugural Farmer of the Year title as well as receiving several other award nominations.

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A snow bunting. Picture by Michael Flowers.

Arctic blast sets the scene for buntings’ arrival

Cold winds straight from the Arctic this week seemed an appropriate time for snow buntings, pictured, to start gathering along the Yorkshire coast with a flock of 40 plus in a ploughed field south of Flamborough lighthouse and other flocks nearby at Buckton and further down the coast at Beacon Ponds,

Environment
The popularity of accommodation such as shepherd's huts is growing, report Farm Stay UK.

Why farm stays as relevant as ever - for farmers and visitors

Farmers who open their gates to holidaymakers are facing more competition than ever before at a time when a profitable diversification has scarcely been seen as being more important.

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Wendy and Shaun McKenna have been hitting the hiking trails, amongest other escapes from the farm.

Living the Dream: Adventures away from Long Meadow

Whilst the teashop is closed for the season, we have managed to get out and about a little more and this week has been no exception. We were able to get over to visit the RHS gardens at Harlow Carr and obviously, because it would be rude not too, we popped into Betty’s whilst we were there to sample some of their delights.

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Angela Kirkwood with some of her piglets. Pictures by Bruce Rollinson.

Keeping faith in pigs reaps reward in Holderness

Sharing a compliment and talking with consumers gives pig farmer Peter Kirkwood of Poplar Farm, Rimswell in Holderness, great satisfaction.

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A snow bunting. Picture by Michael Flowers.

Doubtful emperor tale but grassy Yorkshire clifftop has Roman link

Carr Naze is one of the most fascinating yet surprisingly unsung places on Yorkshire’s 100-plus miles of coastline. You will search in vain for the name on recent Ordnance Survey maps, though, so let me tell you that it’s the grassy clifftop forming the landward end to the well known reef of rocks called Filey Brigg.

Environment
Neil Eastham is a member of the Future Farmers of Yorkshire group.

A major step forward in female genomic testing

I grew up on a Lancashire dairy farm where my family continues to milk 340 pedigree Holstein cows. I always knew I wanted to be a farm animal vet.

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File photo dated 28/04/10 of a CCTV camera. CCTV is to become mandatory in all slaughterhouses in England. Picture by Clive Gee/PA Wire.

Mandate for video monitoring of all English abattoirs

CCTV recording will become mandatory in all slaughterhouses across the country next year, Environment Secretary Michael Gove has confirmed, following almost unanimous support from industry, welfare groups and the public.

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Emma Mosey with homegrown vegetables at Minskip Farm Shop, Minskip near Boroughbridge.

Shed heaven for the Mosey’s hens

They may not be walking around wearing white towelling monogrammed bathrobes ready to strip down for a relaxing hot stone massage or taking a dip in the hot tub, but the hens that have recently moved in to Ben and Emma Mosey’s purpose-built hen shed at Minskip near Boroughbridge, although they will never know it, have found the perfect home.

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Springer spaniel Jess gets into quite a few scrapes.

Julian Norton: Accident-prone Jess in need of attention

Jess was just two years old, but already I knew her very well. She was not an ill dog – far from it! The effervescent, young springer spaniel was the picture of health, but she was very accident-prone. Beneath her cute and innocent exterior was a dog who acted first and thought later. Except that more often than not, she didn’t think at all.

Analysis
Mukers upland hay meadows produce their best displays in mid-June. Picture by David Hill.

Meadows of marvel to be found at Muker

For a small, remote Yorkshire Dales village, Muker has certainly had its fair share of attention.

News
Living the Dream: First frost and the Ghostbusters look

Living the Dream: First frost and the Ghostbusters look

We had our first real frost of the year last night, but thankfully it wasn’t enough to cause me any frozen pipe problems. I awoke to the brightest of sunrises which as you can imagine made for some beautiful pictures.

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Gizelle Jackson with Blake the pygmy headgehog at Beetle Bank Farm at Murton near York.

It’s pure animal magic for Angela at Beetle Bank Farm

Carrying out running repairs to pigeons, hedgehogs and looking after all types of animal makes Angela Serino seem like a modern day Doctor Dolittle. She’s the first to admit she’s not there yet but her long-term goal is to have her own wildlife hospital with a specialism in swifts and swallows.

News
Minette Batters, deputy president of the NFU.

Trade will most define farming’s new era, deputy NFU leader says

The deputy leader of the National Farmers’ Union, Minette Batters, said the future of trade alone will shape the farming landscape for years to come and that it is vital that the entire industry speaks as one to present a clear framework for a domestic agricultural policy.

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A panel discussion held today heard of how Brexit could change the agricultural industry. Picture by Jonathan Gawthorpe.

‘Yorkshire food brand would capitalise on free EU trade deal’

Farmers are capable of forging a productive future from Brexit but until Britain’s future trading relationship with the European Union is agreed, there is no way forward for details of a new domestic policy that would give farmers sorely needed confidence, a public meeting heard.

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