General News

General News

Bog Ashpodel and "Saut"

Recently, bog asphodel has become more prevalent in the uplands, partly due to the management regimes put in place for agri-environment schemes.

Bog Asphodel is poisonous to both sheep and cattle, causing serious kidney problems and a photosensitive disorder ( called 'saut' in Cumbria).  The photosensitization causes various chemical reactions in the skin on exposure to the sun, resulting in tissue damage. It can be fatal. If caught early the animals can be saved.

Liz Truss - new Secretary of State

Taken from NFU online

Owen Paterson has been replaced as Defra Secretary of State by the Conservative MP for South West Norfolk, Liz Truss.

Mr Paterson's departure follows a wide-ranging reshuffle.His 38-year-old replacement, Lizz Tuss, entered parliament in 2010, will leave a ministerial role at the Department for Education.

Ms Truss founded the Free Enterprise Group of Conservative MPs which campaigns for economic reform and a positive attitude to profit making enterprise.

Federation has taken another step towards setting up a Commons Council for Cumbria

In late May we submitted an extensive proposal to the Secretary of State to set up a Commons Council for Cumbria.We are asking the Secretary of State to allow Cumbria to establish a Commons Council by order made under Section 27 of the 2006 Commons Act. If the Secretary of State is convinced that we have demonstrated  prima facie (evidence sufficient to prove a particular proposition) substantial support for a commons council in Cumbria, then there are still a number of steps to achieve as follows:

Julia Aglionby, one of our Committee members is appointed to Board of Natural England

We are very pleased to announce that Julia Aglionby, our Executive Director has been appointed as a member of the Board of Natural England.  Julia along with Andy Clements, Teresa Dent and Simon Lyster will join the Board on 14 July 2014. 

Sheep jobs for June

SHEEP JOBS FOR JUNE: Rhidian Jones, SAC Consulting Sheep and Beef Specialist, provided this useful guide for jobs in the month of June in SAC Consulting’s Sheep and Beef News:

Lowther Estates Trust refuses to sign UELS application on Grasmere Common

The commoners of Grasmere Common want to apply to Natural England to deliver an Upland Entry Level Stewardship Scheme (UELS) on their common. But the owner, Lowther Estates Trust is refusing to sign the form so denying them   access to a much needed payment.

CAP Reform Countdown

Defra have issued the first CAP Reform Countdown newsletter.

It constains:

TB and cattle movements on common land

Defra have produced further guidance on TB catle movement controls and common land.

Briefly, if you are in an annual testing area fom 30 June 2014 all cattle aged over 42 days of age must be pre-movement tested before moving to and from common land.

For movements back from the common, farmers can carry out a post-movement test instead to reflect the fact that in most cases, TB testing on common land is impractical and dangerous.

Cumbrian hill farmers fighting for their livelihoods - article in the Telegraph

The Saturday Telegraph magazine published an article on Cumbria Hill Farmers written by Harriet Fraser with photographs by her husband Rob as part of their Landkeepers project.

The article explains how hill farmers ensure their flocks and their way of life are sustainable alongside the maintaining the landscape and environment.


Landkeepers - tells about the culture and value of hill farming in Cumbria

Land Keepers is a photographic documentary project that explores the culture and value of hill farming in Cumbria, and considers its place within the context of environmental management. Writer Harriet Fraser and Photographer Rob Fraser have spent two years with farmers in the uplands of Cumbria and share their findings through interviews, images, blog, articles and poems.

Well worth a look.

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