18 February 2022

GWCT helps young farmers to get fit for the future

NFYFC Next Gen VisitA new online guide is now available to support young farmers as they embark on their careers. Produced by the National Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs (NFYFC) in partnership with the Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust, the online Fit for Business Guide is part of the Defra-funded Building Skills project and provides guidance for young farmers in an uncertain time for the industry.

The NFYFC approached the GWCT’s Allerton Project in 2021, followed by a visit from the NFYFC national committee, and we will be running training sessions through February and March to discuss the work undertaken at Allerton and the skills young farmers will need in future. The Allerton Project offers a unique insight as a practical demonstration and research farm with an educational remit, and we’re delighted to be working to ensure the next generation of people looking after our landscape and putting food on our plates are fully informed about the latest developments in sustainable farming.

The report covers a breadth of topics, ranging from our experience of Conservation Agriculture, Integrated Pest Management (IPM) and agroforestry, to a discussion around the skills young farmers might need and the ability for farmers to provide their feedback on what skills they feel are required for British farming to fulfil its potential. Participants will also receive guidance on natural capital accounting, agri-environment schemes and regenerative farming systems.

Joe Stanley, the GWCT’s Head of Training and Partnerships, said: “With a training offer to share good practice and a farm to demonstrate the commercial benefits, NFYFC and GWCT are pleased to collaborate again on a project to help share news, offer training and signpost for further information during this time of agricultural transition.

“We hope this guide helps young farmers identify the skills they may need, information to help progress their career or land management plans and provide training options.”

You can access the guide free at www.nfyfc.org.uk/fitforfuture.

Notes to editors

The Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust is an independent wildlife conservation charity which carries out scientific research into Britain’s game and wildlife. We advise farmers and landowners on improving wildlife habitats. We employ 22 post-doctoral scientists and 40 other research staff with expertise in areas such as birds, insects, mammals, farming and statistics.  We undertake our own research as well as projects funded by contract and grant-aid from Government and private bodies.   The Trust is also responsible for a number of Government Biodiversity Action Plan species and is lead partner for grey partridge and joint lead partner for brown hare and black grouse.

The GWCT’s Allerton Project: The GWCT’s Allerton Project is an 800 acre commercial farm business attached to a Research and Educational charitable trust. The Project was established in 1992 with the objective of demonstrating how modern efficient farming and environmental conservation can co-exist. The development of the education objectives of the Trust has expanded substantially to several thousand visitors a year including school groups, politicians and farmers, thus necessitating the construction of a larger visitor centre. The challenge of converting a disused brick cowshed into a sustainable building was given to architect Sylvester Cheung from Melton Mowbray. 60 per cent of construction costs were obtained as a grant from the Rural Development Programme for England.

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