Opportunity to discuss everything from Brexit to robots in agriculture for area’s farmers

Speakers, from left, Catherine Harris, Richard Grayson  Nick Sharp, Elton Moulds and  Phil Gibson EMN-190218-082617001
Speakers, from left, Catherine Harris, Richard Grayson Nick Sharp, Elton Moulds and Phil Gibson EMN-190218-082617001

Farmers from across the county gathered at Market Rasen Racecourse for the biennial Farming Forum.

Sponsored by Nicholsons Chartered Accountants and Perkins George Mawer & Co, the event is now in its 10th year and this year saw more than 140 people attending.

Keynote speaker Jonathan Gill from Harper Adams University

Keynote speaker Jonathan Gill from Harper Adams University

The event was opened by Mike Perkins, from Perkins George Mawer & Co, who introduced the day’s speakers, all experts in the field of agriculture.

Organisers of the event were particularly pleased to have secured keynote speaker, Jonathan Gill from Harper Adams University.

Jonathan gave an up to date and inspiring talk about his experience of being part of the Hands Free Hectare team, which this year successfully drilled, tended and harvested a crop without operators in the driving seats of the vehicles or agronomists on the ground.

Jonathan is a qualified robotic engineer with 10 years experience specialising in mechatronic systems.

Farming Forum

Farming Forum

Needless to say, Brexit was part of the day.

Nick Sharp from Perkins George Mawer & Co was the first to take the stage and he spoke about the effects on the agriculture sector when the UK leaves the EU.

He also looked at the pros and cons of the UK leaving the EU, with and without a deal.

Elton Moulds, also from Perkins George Mawer & Co, gave an update on the rural grant system and applications.

Catchment sensitive farming was the subject for Phil Gibson from Natural England.

Speaking about managing pollution, soil husbandry and drainage to help improve the water quality gave Phil the opportunity to highlight the advice available to manage these areas.

He also gave an update on Countryside Stewardship, looking at what’s new and changing within the regulations.

The legal aspect of a range of topics was covered by agriculture specialist Catherine Harris from Wilkin Chapman.

Catherine’s talk included protecting the family and assets, partnership and tenancy agreements and landownership.

She also emphasised the importance of lifetime gifts.

Over coffee, delegates had the chance to chat to other businesses and the trade stands supporting the event.

Richard Grayson from Nicholsons took to the stage for the penultimate presentation before handing over to Jonathan Gill.

Richard spoke about Making Tax Digital and the time frames, as well as the recent and upcoming tax changes.

The forum came to a close when lunch was served.