I ENJOYED a fabulous evening at the Montgomeryshire YFC Entertainments recently. The Montgomeryshire branch of NFU Cymru sponsors this five day long competition and I had the honour to present some of the trophies on the final night. I was pleased that I did not have to judge the competition as the standard of the clubs was so high. The acting, singing and dancing of all members was enthusiastic and often magical, and the stories told with fantastic costumes and sets were inspiring. Congratulations to all clubs but of course there had to be a winner. Guildsfield received the Montgomeryshire trophy and went on to win the best performers in Wales last weekend. Well done to them.

I also met a lot of young people in Builth Wells on March 6 at the Powys Careers day. What a brilliant event to inspire the high school pupils and help them choose their GCSE subjects. This event offers them the opportunity to find out about careers from engineering to nursing, forestry to, of course farming and land-based careers. I enjoyed chatting to lots of students and hope some are inspired to follow a future in agriculture.

As I have mentioned before there is a threat that Welsh Government will legislate that all Welsh farms will be under NVZ type rules in 2020. NFU Cymru are actively opposing this heavy-handed proposition, which ignores an expert working group put together in 2018, and does not balance evidence of pollution with risk and cost.

Lorna Davies has recently been employed by NFU Cymru as a water quality/nutrient management project manager for the All Wales Farmer-led Nutrient Management Programme. The Position is joint-funded with NRW and Lorna will take forward the work of the NRW Agri-Pollution Sub Group to develop farmer-led voluntary approaches to nutrient management. Part of her role will be to encourage farmers to look at their individual farms, as part of the partnership approach. It would be beneficial for farmers to get evidence of the water quality in brooks running through their land, and also to assess their management to minimise the risk of pollution from nitrates and phosphates, as well as sediment.

Lorna came to speak at out Montgomeryshire NFU Cymru meeting recently and is available to give advice to NFU Cymru members and others in the industry. At the meeting we also had a talk by Adrian Kinner-Smith who works for the Severn Rivers Trust. Adrian, who has had a lot of experience in agriculture, is able to advise farmers on funding available from the trust to assist in promoting the quality of the River Severn and its tributaries. You can contact him on 07579 032472.