While pundits and politicians argue the toss over Tony Blair’s legacy, for farming it’s hard to find a good thing to say about his 10 years in charge. Foot-and-mouth, the single farm payment debacle and the devastation of some sectors all fell within his Prime Ministerial tenure.
But there may be some who beg to differ. Some may see the past decade as the period when the seeds for the future were sown – diversification into new business areas, direct selling, local food, the reconnection of farmer and consumer.
“Blair has been a media success as a communicator but the main agents of change are now global rather than solely UK based. That’s the real difference.” – He his-self
“The change of regime at DEFRA last year has certainly been a breath of fresh air compared to the previous five years. But the immense burden of bureaucracy and paperwork has to be the most lasting legacy of this administration.” – Townie
“I think the end result of the last ten years can be summed up in three words: Regulation, regulation, regulation.” – Darling
We’ve invited comments from industry and farm leaders who have had their say. Now please let us know your views, your abiding memories, your position 10 years ago and where you are now and what for you sums up the period May 1997 to May 2007.