National Federation of Young Farmers' Clubs

Fun, Learning, and Achievement

14 July 2010

Young farmers are being priced out of living in the countryside due to a chronic shortage of affordable homes.

House prices in rural England have more than doubled during the past decade to average £256,698, while the average salary for people working in the countryside has risen to just £21,000.

The National Federation of Young Farmers' Clubs, the National Housing Federation, and the National Farmers Union are warning that people in rural areas have little hope of being able to afford a property where they live and this poses a threat to traditional rural life.
A poll for the National Housing Federation found that 65% of people living in rural areas thought local families and young people were being priced out by the high cost of property.
A further 63% thought there was a shortage of affordable homes for local people in their village, with 70% saying they would support plans to build a small number of affordable properties for local people in their area.

More than a third of people in rural communities thought village shops, post offices and pubs had declined during the past five years, while a third thought second home owners had a negative impact on community life. One in five people also thought the number of second homes in their community had increased during the past five years.
The number of people on waiting lists for affordable housing in England has soared to 750,000, and nearly 100,000 new affordable homes need to be built in rural areas over the next decade to meet demand.

The groups are calling on local housing authorities to draw up action plans to address the housing needs of people in their communities to ensure villages remain sustainable.
NFYFC’s Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee chairwoman Katherine Sealy said: “With average house prices now over £250,000, young people like me can’t afford to live in villages.

"Without young, dynamic and enthusiastic staff and customers, local shops and services will be forced to close and we must not just sit and watch as communities suffer as a result.

"The affordable housing issue has to be addressed to ensure the future sustainability of rural areas and jobs.”
NFYFC's ARAC Forum called for rural housing to top the government agenda at the organisation's annual convention in Torquay in April.

07 July 2010

The NFYFC tug of war competitions will be among the attractions at this year’s Royal County of Berkshire Show.

The finals will take place in the main arena on the second day of the two-day show on 18-19 September.

This is a new venue for the competition and a host of other attractions are on offer during the weekend.

The White Helmets Motorcycle Display Team will be putting on amazing display which includes 21 soldiers from the Royal Corps of Signals in a pyramid formation on top of six motorbikes. They also jump through hoops of fire, over cars and perform death-defying crossover rides.

The Band and Bugles of the Rifles will be entertaining the audience with their inspiring military music. They are the only military regiment who march ‘at the double’ past the Queen, at an extraordinarily fast 140 paces a minute. The Buglers are operational soldiers, some of whom have recently returned from Afghanistan.

There’s plenty more to enjoy – including the Wicker Man, countryside area, Food Fare marquee, horticultural area and 600 shops.

Tickets are now on sale and you can save up to 20 per cent off the normal ticket price by buying in advance at www.rcbs-online.co.uk/ordertickets.php or telephone the box office on 01635 247155.

The 2010 Show will be heralded as ‘the year of the pig’ and there’s a new championship class, alongside the extensive annual line-up of cattle, sheep, poultry, goats and camelids classes.

 


07 July 2010

NFYFC is taking the awards ceremony for one of its most prestigious competitions to the CLA Game Fair in Warwickshire for the first time later this month.

The competition is specifically designed to give tomorrow’s tenants a dry run in applying for a farm tenancy, and includes viewing a case study farm, submitting a detailed business plan and facing a rigorous interview panel.

It supports the aims of the AgriSkills strategy by encouraging professionalism and ongoing professional development.

Freshly equipped with NFYFC’s recently developed tenancy training sessions under their belt, the competitors will make this a well-fought competition for the top prize of scholarships to next year’s Oxford Farming Conference.

Judges from Lloyds TSB, Savills and the Tenant Farmers Association (TFA) will announce the winners of a tendering process for a case study farm in Shropshire at the Game Fair Theatre at 3pm on Saturday 24 July.

Sponsor and judge George Dunn, the TFA’s chief executive, said: “The market in agricultural tenancies is fiercely competitive. Those who already have a farming base and are looking to expand will inevitably have a head start on new entrants. New entrants therefore need to be sharper, keener and better prepared than the competition.

“There is no better way to get ready for the challenge than to take part in the Farm Business Development Competition and the associated training days arranged by NFYFC. I am really looking forward to reading the proposals from the competitors this year and meeting them at interview. I am well aware that the process can be quite daunting but it has been pleasing to see the year-on-year improvement in the standard of competition entry. Everyone wants to win but even those who don’t will have improved significantly their chances of winning a tender in real life having gone through this simulation.”

Head of Savills UK Professional Services Clive Beer commented: “Savills is delighted to be involved in the competition by providing a case study farm and helping members to understand the landlord’s and agent’s perspective.

“The NFYFC Farm Business Development competition and training is a well-rounded and necessary exercise for would-be tenants. Working with NFYFC and the TFA, we can advise on the pitfalls and necessary skills to help today’s young farmers be the successful tenants of the future.”

NFYFC’s agriculture and rural affairs officer Sarah Palmer said: “The competition is realistic and testing so that would-be tenants are well-practised when it comes to the real application. Young farmers know they have considerable competition from established farmers and need to be at the top of their game to be successful. Visiting the CLA Game Fair will give competitors a further opportunity to acquire skills and ideas for their careers as future tenant farmers.

“NFYFC is pleased to be working with industry partners and Defra to deliver comprehensive training and a realistic competition to help secure future farming opportunities.”

 

 


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