About Britain's Fittest Farmer
Britain’s Fittest Farmer was launched by Farmers Weekly as a fun way of sparking a vital discussion about the physical and mental health of the nation’s farmers.
As farming becomes less active and more mechanised and office-based, it’s more important than ever before to make sure Britain’s farmers are getting the exercise that they need to stay fit and healthy.
Farming can also be an isolating job, which is why it is also vital for farmers to focus on their own mental health and wellbeing so that they can keep their business in tip-top condition too.
This competition aims to get all farmers thinking and talking about their health, physical and mental, to make sure they are in top condition to run their farm businesses.
Oli Hill, Community Editor, Farmers Weekly
A sheep and beef farmer’s son from Somerset, Oli has worked at Farmers Weekly for five years and edits the Farmlife section of the magazine and website.
“This competition is all about getting our hardworking farmers to think more proactively about their health, both mental and physical.
“It aims to support farmers’ amazing work to put food on our plates and care for our countryside, by helping them to ensure they are fit to farm.
“We’re looking for farmers who make fantastic ambassadors for health and fitness in agriculture, to help break the taboo of talking about mental health issues such as depression, eating disorders and rural isolation.”
Tom Kemp, Farm Fitness
Essex arable farmer’s son Tom is credited with building one of the world’s best gyms.
He took a dilapidated corner of the yard at the family farm and transformed it into a raw and exciting outdoor environment for people of all strengths and abilities.
“Farm Fitness is honoured to be partnering with Farmers Weekly to once again help in the hunt for Britain’s Fittest Farmer. It’s our ongoing mission to honour our agricultural roots, so this is a great privilege for us.
“I’m looking forward to seeing who’s been sowing their seeds and harvesting those gains over the past year. Only two can be crowned the 2021 female and male champions – who is it going to be?”
Jude McCann, Farming Community Network
Having grown up on a family farm in, Northern Ireland, Jude has significant experience within agriculture and, in particular, the farm support sector in the UK and indeed internationally. He spent seven years as Chief Executive of a charity which provides support to farmers and their families in Northern Ireland, before taking up the post of CEO with the Farming Community Network (FCN) in January 2020.
His educational experience has provided him with a global perspective of agriculture and expertise, particularly related to welfare and social issues in farming communities. This includes his PhD examining the social impacts of subsidy reforms in New Zealand and Canada and his recent Nuffield Farming scholarship, in which he examined how farm support organisations can help secure farmers’ resilience in a changing world.
His experience in establishing and developing support programmes has increased his passion for sustainable farming communities.