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Letting to a farm worker- what do I need to know?

Sarah Whitehurst
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We are still seeing examples of employers failing to serve the correct documentation before handing over the keys of a cottage to new farm workers. They think they are granting an assured shorthold tenancy (AST) and that they will be able to recover...

Tenancy reform

Julie Robinson
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The Tenancy Reform Industry Group (TRIG) has been meeting over the last few months to develop recommendations for changes that relate to both Agricultural Holdings Act (AHA) tenancies and farm business tenancies (FBTs). The Group picked up on themes from...

Countryside Stewardship and Brexit - Treasury announcement

Julie Robinson
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The Treasury announcement of 3 October is, on the face of it, good news for farmers, land managers and woodland owners. The Government will guarantee funding for agri-environment agreements entered into before we leave the EU but which continue after that...

Brexit and Basic Payment Scheme Mark 2

Julie Robinson
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The Treasury announced on 13 August that it will guarantee the current level of agricultural funding under Pillar 1 of the CAP until 2020. In essence this means that the “direct payments” element of the CAP will continue beyond the date the UK...

Getting farm partnerships right

Julie Robinson
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We recently ran a seminar in Kent about farming partnerships fit for the 21st century. The seminar was based around a scenario which would be recognisable to many farming families; one of the younger partners stops pulling their weight on the farm,...

Agricultural Wages (Wales) Order 2016

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Whilst farmers in England may have had cause to forget about Agricultural Wages Orders following the abolition of the Agricultural Wages Board in 2013, the effect of abolition was not felt in Wales. The Welsh government retained the effect of the last Order...

Farm succession. A not so simple affair.

Elizabeth Young
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DEFRA has published statistics on farmers’ attitudes towards succession planning. The information was collected via the Farm Business Survey for 2013/14. The key findings were: Just over a third of farm businesses had a nominated successor. For...

Young Farmer payment. Check your eligibility.

Jarred Wright
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Quite a few of us at Roythornes are being approached for advice on whether farm businesses are eligible to claim the Young Farmer payment, one of the top-up payments that is available under the new Direct Payments regime that came into force this year. ...

Act Now on Basic Payments

Julie Robinson
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A Roythornes blog post which gives some crucial points to farmers who need to transfer payment entitlements or have entitlements transferred to them.

Payment Entitlement Transfers and the October deadline

Julie Robinson
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We are getting a few queries from our agricultural clients about entitlement transfers and the Defra's October deadline, and in particular about the consequences of not transferring by then. The Q&A below might help. 1. Why is there an October...

Planning for the Basic Payment Scheme and Greening

Julie Robinson
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Farmers involved in specialist cropping, contract farming, block-cropping or diversification may need to take a step back and consider how things are best structured to ensure compliance with the new Basic Payment Scheme and Greening rules. Diversification...

Exclusivity clauses in zero hours contracts - agriculture

Phil Cookson
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As you will have seen from our general employment update there are proposals from Vince Cable (Business Secretary) to ban exclusivity clauses in “zero hours contracts”. Whilst zero hours contracts have received a pretty bad press over recent...

Safety on farm: should you have a social media policy?

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Farms are one of the most dangerous places to work. According to the Health & Safety Executive , while just over 1 in 100 GB workers work in agriculture, the sector accounts for about 1 in 5 fatal injuries to workers. Does the rise in...

Definition of Permanent Pasture

Tom Foottit
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The Single Payment Scheme definition of permanent pasture has come under challenge in the EU Court of Justice. The SPS defines permanent pasture as “land used to grow grasses or other herbaceous forage naturally (self-seeded) or through cultivation...

Planning for the future: have rural developers been given a free rein?

Claire Hindmarsh
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On 6 April 2014 new planning rules come into force which will allow developers to make certain changes of use without the need to jump through the hoops of obtaining full planning permission. Under the new rules, impressively named the Town and County...

Manorial rights - should you be worried about them?

Julie Robinson
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Manorial rights are one of the more arcane aspects of land law, but that doesn’t mean they can be ignored, particularly with a Land Registry deadline for their registration looming. What are they?  Before 1926, in addition to freehold land and...

Cap Reform: What is agricultural activity?

Julie Robinson
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Aside from the introduction of greening measures, one of the most significant changes in the new direct payment regime touches on what constitutes agricultural activity. Under the Single Payment Scheme, agricultural activity was not only producing crops and...

Chancel Repair Liability notices - don't take them as read

Julie Robinson
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It is always worth checking whether notices from the Land Registry are well founded, particularly if they are about a potential liability for chancel repair.  Ask to see the evidence, do your own research, do not be afraid to challenge the notice if the...

Protecting Your Assets: Five Essentials for Landowners' Autumn "To Do" Lists

Tom Foottit
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We shared a platform with Savills and Duncan & Toplis yesterday evening, at the impressive Kelham Hall in Nottinghamshire. Below are the notes from one of the talks we gave to the farmers, estate owners and managers that attended. The focus was on...

Manorial rights and the 12 October 'deadline'

Julie Robinson
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Since midnight on 12 October, manorial rights have no longer been overriding interests. An overriding interest is an interest in land which binds buyers or owners of land even if it does not appear on the register. In short, midnight on 12 October is not a...

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