24 July 1998

Bad & not improving

LANDOWNERS leader Ian MacNicol, visiting the Royal Welsh show for the first time, warned the government that things were getting extremely desperate in the farming industry and in allied trades.

"The government has to recognise the huge crisis and re-look at the agrimonetary policy. It is not good enough for the Prime Minister to say that interest rates and the strength of sterling have nothing to do with the government but lie with the Bank of England, " he said, adding that he had just been offered £58-£59/t for malting barley off the combine. It was only a few years ago that prices well over £100/t were common.

"The time has come for the government to take some responsibility for exchange rates," Mr MacNicol insisted.

Braving the elements, and the car-parks, were the order of the day at this years Royal Welsh Show at Builth Wells.