The Home of Rural Expertise and Advice

The Government continues to issue advice and updates adhering to this ever-changing situation we currently find ourselves in. 

Rural businesses cover a huge range of industries and activities across the South West, therefore, the impact of Covid-19 will be widely varied. We are ready to help, and it is in situations such as this where experience counts. 
 
Contact your local professional

Outlined below is advice and government guidance which we hope will be helpful. 

The Farming sector has been impacted in a variety of ways, for some, activity will have continued largely unaffected. However, those with more diversified businesses will have had to adapt to the current restrictions.

We remain available to give both general and specific advice through this difficult period, please call or email in the normal way.

The NFU have provided a dedicated Coronavirus advice area, which provides useful information surrounding the current situation.

NFU advice site>>

New Announcement 05.05.20
The Government announced new funding to support dairy farmers. They will be able to access up to £10,000 each to help them overcome the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. For more information, and to check eligability visit the gov.uk website >>

The Government have today announced an extension to the BPS deadline, which is now Monday 15th June 2020 - additional information can be found here >>

The Countryside Stewardship Scheme for Hedgerows and Boundaries closes on Friday 1st May - additional information can be found here >>

Meanwhile the CSS mid-tier deadline is 31st May to order an application pack and 31st July to submit an application, we therefore have plenty of time to discuss options and put together draft applications.

Please note that the latest advice, from the Government in respect of Covid-19, covering farmers rural businesses and land owners can be found here >>

And for further information from the RPA regarding BPS for 2020 please click here >>

Our estate management team are working hard to provide clients with advice and support as they deal with the consequences of the Covid-19 outbreak.

The team has full access to all emails, electronic files, accountancy records and property database, and are therefore, able to continue management of all estates and farms on a practical level.

Our teams are here to help through this difficult time so please pick up the phone and talk to us.

The government have produced a guidance note, which outlines the restrictions and practices which must be adhered during these times. 

The complete guide can be found here >>

For our development and planning teams they are working remotely, and therefore, it is business as usual. They are able to continue with team and client meetings via video conferencing and telephone calls. They are keeping in regular contact with local planning authorities in order to keep clients as up to date as possible.

The planning system continues to function, however, the following should be noted:

REGISTRATION OF APPLICATIONS

There will inevitably be some delays given that the teams are also working from home. Authorities are finding it difficult to deal with the issuing of some information via email. Local authorities are handling this is different ways. There may be difficulties with posting site notices informing the public of applications, and in some cases the authorities are asking applicants to assist with this process.

PRE-APPLICATION MEETINGS

The majority of these are now dealt with video conferencing.

SITE VISITS

There is inevitably disruption to site visits during this period of restrictive travel, therefore, some Councils are requesting additional photography to be included within submissions. The use of aerial photography, video footage and street view technology can also assist.

PLANNING COMMITTEES

The Coronavirus Act 2020 (Section 78) allows the following provision ‘persons to attend, speak at, vote in, or otherwise participate in, local authority meetings without all of the persons, or without any of the persons, being together in the same place’. This therefore means that committees can meet via video conference.

PLANNING APPEALS

The Planning Inspectorate has temporarily paused all appeals proceeding by way of hearing or public inquiry. Interested parties have submitted requests to PINs and the Secretary of State that by using video technology and adapting formats, these should be resumed shortly. 

Our three livestock centres; South Molton, Tavistock and Honiton Collection Centre remain open and operational, although adhering to strict guidelines to ensure the safety of both our staff and the public.

To keep up to date with their schedule of operation and outlined restrictions please visit our Agriculture Hub >>

In accordance with government guidelines we have postponed all our public auctions until further notice. In the meantime, we are using our well established online timed auction system to aid the rural community in the buying and selling of agricultural equipment.

For all forthcoming online sales please visit our Online Timed Auction page >>

National Farmers Union

Country Land and Business Association.

(Some is available to everyone and some requires a membership login to access.)

UK Government

Business Support 

Farmers, landowners and rural businesses