Charlie Armstrong is not best pleased with a £26,000 repayment bill

Good frosty mornings have brought some drier weather at last and this has allowed us to turn ewes and lambs out. They are still being fed with the dry weather snacker. The sugar beet we have been feeding now has too much soil contamination and washing it is not proving very successful, which means barley is now being mixed in with the silage and fed ad lib.

With the scanning almost complete it is apparent ewes tupped in the snow haven’t all been tupped. Ewes put to the Leister have scanned badly and ewes tupped with other breeds have been great. The only observation I can make is that cheaper tups work better.

We have just bought 750 goats or should I say easy care sheep either way they scanned well with only 10 geld, and they are as fit lops.

I am still looking for the next perfect breed where no shepherd is needed. With inputs rising we will soon need a breed like this as the housewife can’t pay any more for lamb.

At last all of our potatoes have left the farm and Greenvale has performed well in selling them – I only wish it could find a market for over-sized, green-tinted, mechanically damaged bakers. To try and decrease the amount of greens and bring harvest forward we are chitting them this year, but driving over our yard with a 13-high load of chitting trays without tipping them is like Scotland scoring a try – impossible.

The RPA phoned up to say it is now ready to realise our SFP if we agree to repay an over-payment of £26,000 dating back to 2005 that it has only just picked up on.

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