28 February 1997

Only 40 join new farmer register

LOW interest among young farmers in the rural starters register has been blamed on lack of support from landowners and agents.

Only 40 young farmers have joined the register, after its launch last July by the Country Landowners Association, Tenant Farmers Association and National Federation of Young Farmers.

Set up to link tenants with land agents, the register has achieved just one successful placement. The TFA is now planning a recruitment drive after Lady Day (Mar 15).

TFA chief executive, George Dunn, said he was disappointed by the level and type of support from the CLA and agents.

Oliver Harwood, CLA rural practice surveyor, argued that it had actively backed the register through its in-house magazine and regional secretaries. But there was a limit to landowners help.