Soon the 152nd Great Yorkshire Show will be back on in Harrogate. The main farming event of the year.
Its a photographers dream. So much to shoot, so many different styles to practice. This year, as well as the compulsory shots of the events, I’ll be concentrating on taking “people” images. Trying to capture the people of the farming community, the passion for the land and the job they do.
I really need to spend the time photographing people. Outside of the studio, I lack confidence, those off the wall shots, spontaneous undirected snaps of life.
I’m really going to enjoy this years show, of course, photographs will be available in the Events gallery.
Secretary of State.
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA),
17 Smith Square
My friend, who is in farming at the moment, recently received a cheque for £3,000 from the Rural Payments Agency for not rearing pigs. I have been in the “not rearing pigs business” for many years but have not received a cheque as yet. I presume this is an oversight by your department and it will be posted out to me with due haste.
In your opinion, what is the best kind of farm not to rear pigs on, and which is the best breed of pigs not to rear? I want to be sure I am in keeping with all government policies, as dictated by the EU under the Common Agricultural Policy.
I do not rear bacon pigs or porkers is this the type you want not rearing? Are there any advantages in not rearing rare breeds such as Saddlebacks or Gloucester Old Spots, or are there too many people already not rearing these?
As I see it, the hardest part of this programme will be keeping an accurate record of how many pigs I haven’t reared. Are there any Government or Local Authority courses on this?
My friend is very satisfied with this business. He has been rearing pigs for forty years or so, and the best he ever made on them was £1,422 in 1968. That is – until this year, when he received a cheque for not rearing any.
If I get £3,000 for not rearing 50 pigs, will I get £6,000 for not rearing 100? I have been operating on a small scale by not breeding 50 pigs for many years however I am thinking of increasing my turnover to about 4,000 pigs not raised, which will mean about £240,000 in payments. As I become more expert in not rearing pigs, I plan to be more ambitious, perhaps increasing to say, 40,000 pigs not reared, for which I should expect about £2.4 million from your department. Can these payments be back dated as I can prove that I have not reared pigs on my farm for 15 years. Incidentally, I wonder if I would be eligible to receive tradable carbon credits for all these pigs I have not reared that are not producing harmful and polluting methane gases?
Another point: These pigs that I have not reared will not eat 2,000 tonnes of cereals. I understand that you also pay farmers for not growing crops. Will I qualify for payments for not growing cereals to not feed the pigs I don’t rear and can payments for these cereals I do not grow to feed the pigs I do not rear be back dated?
I am also considering the “not milking cows” business, so please send any information you have on that too. Please could you also include the current Defra advice on set aside fields? Can this be done on an e-commerce basis with virtual fields (of which I seem to have several thousand hectares)?
In view of the above you will realise that I will be totally unemployed, and will therefore qualify for unemployment benefits (Job Seekers Allowance). I shall of course be voting for your party at the next general election.