Training the next generation of hill farmers

About the organisation

The Farmer Network is a not for profit organisation operating in a variety of ways to improve the sustainability of farms in Cumbria and the Yorkshire Dales. The Farmer Network was started in Cumbria in 2005, and has developed a track record of help, support and guidance to individual members. It is especially known for encouraging local farmers to work together to improve efficiency, increase knowledge and skills, educate the public, cope with paperwork and increase revenue. The Network employs local farmer coordinators to support members.

About the Case Study / Project

When consulted regarding issues facing farmers in the area, the overwhelming response from Farmer Network representatives highlighted the need to provide extra support to encourage young people into hill farming, To tackle this pressing issue, The Prince’s Countryside Fund will be funding the Hill Farming Succession Scheme.

The scheme will train 8 people over a 2 year period in hill farming skills, gaining experience and being mentored by 4-6 different farms in a local valley. 5 farmers from the target valleys will also receive training to ensure they are able to carry out some of the relevant training, act as mentors and help to educate the public and agency staff. The trainees will also be taught the important skills of maintaining the infrastructure of the countryside which results in the unique landscape of Cumbria.

We believe that this scheme will improve the chances of sustaining hill farming significantly, by using the community to help educate and involve young people and help to give them a first chance to farm by themselves. It will also provide much needed hands on support to hill farmers who are involved in the scheme at lower costs and promote a better maintained landscape, through extra work by the young people.

View Case Study PDF Page One here

View Case Study PDF Page Two here

Impact

Key contact

For more information visit: www.thefarmernetwork.org

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