10 May 2002

GRADUAL MOVE INTO ESA

PETER Nye, who farms near Shoreham-by-Sea in Sussex, has been progressively bringing his previously arable land into the South Downs Environmentally Sensitive Area since 1992. The last cereals were grown in 2001 and from this year all 500ha (1250 acres) will be in grassland. Most of the land comes into the Tier 3A category – that is arable reversion to chalk downland – and attracts a grant of £330/ha/year. The established grassland is grazed by Mr Nyes expanding beef herd. The plan is that this will grow to 350 cows plus followers in three years time.

Peter Nye braves a March downpour with some of his beef animals.