Farmers are being invited to enter a prestigious conservation award.

Past winners of the Broadoak Farming Silver Lapwing Award include East Yorkshire farmers Richard Fuller, of Givendale Farm, near Pocklington, and John Smith, of Southburn and Eastburn Farms, near Driffield, who won last year.

Picture: Richard Fuller

Both men work for JSR Farms Ltd.

Now celebrating its 20th year, the Silver Lapwing is the United Kingdom's pre-eminent award for farm conservation. It is presented annually to the farmer who has done most to enhance wildlife and landscape conservation alongside successful commercial activity.

David Ball, chief executive of the Farming and Wildlife Advisory Group (FWAG), said: "Entries to this year's award are encouraged from all types of farming systems and size of enterprise. We are looking for farmers who are integrating everyday farming operations with a programme of activities which will gradually improve the fabric of their land and encourage more species to thrive."

This is the sixth year that agriculture company Broadoak Farming has sponsored the award. Its chief executive Peter Johnson said: "In difficult farming times as well as in good, I believe it is important for farmers to show how they are contributing to the health of our countryside as well as sustaining the rural economy."

Local FWAG volunteer groups judge their county or area entries first, before sending their local winner forward to be considered by the national judges.

The national winner of this year's award will receive a silver trophy plus £1,000 in prize money.

The deadline for entries to this year's competition is Friday, May 8. Farmers can obtain entry forms from their local FWAG office or by ringing 01203 696699.


North Yorkshire farmers were given a boost when a national advisor for a leading animal feed compounder predicted a good future for the livestock industry.

Presenting prizes in the group's National Forage Awards in the company's eastern region at Northallerton, Bruce Woodacre, a ruminant advisor of BOCM PAULS, said the future would be based on systems designed around the use of bulk feeds or forage.

"Don't be guided too much by milk from forage figures or litres from grazed grass. None of these on their own are any good," he said.He urged farmers to be even more professional in treating grass. "Treat it as a crop, test the soils and adopt a weed free policy."

Yorkshire and Cleveland farmers took all five places in the national forage awards. The farmers were competing against an entry of 3,000 silage samples taken in an area from the Forth to the Thames. First place for the section was taken by Northallerton farmers G T Barker who achieved high crude protein levels of 17.4. George and Neil Barker's Thornborough Holsteins have achieved top production figures. The herd's present average is a magnificent 9,000 litres from 120 cows.

Winners of the big bale section were D Parkin and Sons, of Manor Farm, Gateforth, Selby, who aim to achieve a high dry matter in their forage which is fed to 55 cows. The herd average is 6,600 litres a cow at a feed rate of 0.21kg a litre.

Converted for the new archive on 30 June 2000. Some images and formatting may have been lost in the conversion.