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Farron calls for new deal for upland farmers

January 23, 2018 10:06 AM

Farmers Market with GateSouth Lakes MP Tim Farron is calling for a new deal for upland farmers to reward them for their contribution to the £3bn tourism economy in Cumbria.

Speaking at the 'Future of Farming Discussion Forum' at Penrith Auction Mart on Sunday, Tim said that it was important that the case be made for the uplands, otherwise they will continue to be ignored.

Earlier this month the Government announced it would only commit to making payments to farmers for the next four years - with no clarity that there will be specific support for hill farmers.

Tim said: "I want to thank the three sheep associations for setting up the event on Sunday.

"It showed upland farmers speaking with one voice which is really important and it was a real privilege to spend time listening to their concerns.

"My job now is to fight their corner in Westminster as the Government puts together a new British Agricultural Policy, with hill farmers once again being overlooked.

"Hill farmers play such an important role in preserving the landscape - there can be no doubt that without them the Lake District would not have been awarded World Heritage Site status.

"By continuing to ignore their needs, the Government are sleepwalking into seriously damaging the landscape.

"What's needed is for there to be a new deal for the uplands - with some of the money from the Common Agricultural Policy rewarding them for the vital work that they do.

"The new deal should also include apprenticeships to help recruit people into the industry and sustain hill farming for the future."