Jim Papworth, one of Norfolk's most recognised farmers has won the 2012 National Agriculture Award from the Royal Agricultural Society of England in recognition of his 'long term dedication and contribution' to educating children about farming and food.
This year’s Bledisloe Gold Medal for Landowners has been awarded to Charles Forbes Adam of Escrick Park Estate near York which boasts substantial diversification including offices, commercial lets, holiday lodges, wedding facilities, equestrian cross-country course and a National Nature Reserve.
During the judge’s visit they were impressed with not only the breadth of diversification but also the Estate’s ability to maximise the potential of their rural assets whilst enhancing the natural environment.
The Excellence in Practical Farming & Business Award 2012 has been awarded to the Dunning Family whose business Westmorland Ltd grew out of the family farm, 40 years ago, when the M6 was built through their farmland, near Shap summit in Cumbria.
Today Westmorland ltd includes Tebay services and farm shops, the Westmorland Hotel and Caravan Park at Tebay north, J38 Truckstop and the Rheged visitor and conference centre at Penrith. In 2014, Westmorland Ltd will open a second motorway services in Gloucester based on the same principles of sourcing from local farms.
This family business is committed to local sourcing and the Butchery manager works closely with the Farm Manager who provides high quality lamb and beef, every week of the year.
The judges were particularly impressed with the farm’s ability to tailor the output to meet the daily needs of the catering and butchery side of the business.
The Dunning Family have shown a huge amount of diversification in this business as well as sensitive maintenance of the landscape, stewardship of the countryside and the obvious care and attention shown through improved natural habitats/ woodland, including the grounds around Tebay services itself. All of the above have allowed the business to be extremely successful.
The society’s Research Medal has been awarded to Professor Laura Green of Warwick University in recognition of her outstanding scientific work in reducing footrot in sheep. Professor Laura Green has led an interdisciplinary team of researchers, bringing in appropriate skills as required to best answer questions.
Laura Green presents research in academic situations and has been published widely in peer review journals. She has also been focussed on knowledge transfer to farmers and veterinarians and learning from their practical experience.
In this way she has cycled through a series of research and technology transfer projects delivering high quality science through to practical change that has had a direct impact on the farmers’ ability to manage animal health.