Newly elected Tenant Farmers Association chairman Stephen Wyrill has hit out at the CLA in his maiden speech.

Mr Wyrill said the CLA had blocked proposals to reform tenancy legislation that could have benefited tenant farmers.

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The CLA used its veto to block “a number of sensible proposals” for reforming tenancy legislation, said Mr Wyrill, particularly in the area of succession. Several recommendations from the Future of Farming Review had “floundered”, he said, because the Tenancy Reform Industry Group, which had been tasked with taking it forward, required decisions to be made by consensus.

Mr Wyrill also said that the flooding situation must serve as “a wake-up call” to the issue of increasingly volatile weather. He suggested the costs should be met by a drainage rate levy on those affected by flooding as well as those who contributed to increased flood risk. New developments on flood plains should be expected to pay substantially more, he said.