Trafford Farm Update for October 2020 02 Oct
Chris Rothery – Chairman LAS Trafford Fund
Trafford Farm Farming Operations
John Hollis has now completed his first year as tenant on the Trafford Farm at Carlton le Moorland. This has been a challenging first year, with considerable delay to sowing the season’s crops due to the extremely wet conditions last autumn and winter – the rains started in earnest on the 22nd September 2019. As the photo shows there was standing water on many areas of the farm, so that your Trustees decided to complete some drainage work in admittedly difficult conditions, which has greatly improved the potential of four fields adjacent to Broughton Road. John has paid for draining an additional field, which was completed at the same time. He will continue with a programme of digging out the ditches that have not been maintained for many years, during the coming winter. We have also planted some Oak Trees along Broughton Road, to enhance the approach to the village.
John did manage to plant spring crops from March onwards and has successfully completed harvest of Wheat, Barley, Oats and Beans. Yields were in line with many others across the area and hence extremely disappointing. On a positive note the drilling for 2021 season is going well, with a good area of Oil Seed Rape and Winter wheat already in the ground by direct drill. John will bring us up to speed with some interesting and innovative crops that he is planting for next year’s harvest, so stay tuned for potentially exciting production news.
The Lincolnshire Agricultural Society Trafford Fund (LAST)
Three young Lincolnshire applicants were awarded grants to attend the Worshipful Company of Farmers ABCAM and Challenge of Rural Leadership courses at the RAU, Cirencester in November 2019 (Carolyn Coxe, Patrick Tomlinson and Dan Liddell) they will present their experiences to us at the next Council Meeting. Also, a second LAS Trafford Fund Scholarship was been awarded to Alex Olivant, a member of the LAS Impact Group, attended the 2020 Oxford Farming Conference last January and will be invited to share her experience with us in the New Year. Due to the restrictions of the current Pandemic, there will be no actual ABCAM courses or Oxford Farming Conference this year, we will offer scholarships when the 2021/2 programmes are announced.
Part of the money received from Sheila Trafford’s estate has been used to contribute to the funding of the EXO Education Building renovation, which is nearly complete and certainly a dramatic improvement as a Showground facility, that you must see on your next visit. Ongoing the LAST Fund continues to support the LAS Education activities, including help with the funding the employment of Suzie Stone who works with Rosie Crust. They have been busy with Armchair Agriculture; Sunday Funday and the #LincolnshireDay online school event, a great effort, keeping up our educational efforts through these challenging times.
The Trustees decided to broaden the scope of the LAST Fund to allow applicants for agricultural projects other than education. The first recipient of an award is John Brogan, who farms at Bassingham, he is 33 years of age, born in Carlton le Moorland and has started a beef rearing business from scratch, now producing around 12 bulls a month for slaughter. He was in need of a shed to keep his hay in good order, so applied to the LAST Fund, the money involved was more than LAS felt comfortable with, so the Henry Plumb Foundation was contacted, who have decided to make an award to John, with the LAST Fund picking up the balance of material cost, John will erect the building himself. We will give full details and photos when the project is complete.
The Society owes a very great debt of gratitude to the late Miss Shelia Trafford. Her bequest to our Society is making a big difference to many lives and is providing vital support to enable us to continue our important Education and Development work at this challenging time.