In our latest blog post, Management Board member Davina Fillingham explains how farming succession will come into sharp focus at our 2021 Autumn Debate.
Farming has very much been my passion from an early age.
I was brought up on a small farm near Driffield and this led me to a career as a Chartered Rural Surveyor and Agribusiness Consultant, most recently as an Associate Partner with Dee, Atkinson & Harrison.
In my spare time, my partner and I run our own small Pedigree Aberdeen Angus herd and commercial sheep flock with my family, and I have been a member of the Future Farmers of Yorkshire since January 2012.
I’ve found Future Farmers to be a great way to meet people who share my enthusiasm for agriculture and to discuss and share the challenges facing the industry; something I really value and why I joined the group’s Management Board earlier this year.
Getting together again for our Autumn Debate
Our members thoroughly enjoyed getting back together at the Great Yorkshire Show this summer and we’re looking forward to coming together again, this time for our autumn debate on Tuesday 16th November at Pavilions of Harrogate where we’ll be discussing the intricacies and complexities of succession planning.
Succession will mean something different to everyone.
It is widely acknowledged as a complicated and potentially costly exercise that involves confronting the emotions of family members.
This can prove contentious and means many farming businesses avoid thinking about it, let alone talking about it!
Whilst we will be unable to resolve succession issues for everyone’s unique situation in one evening, we do hope to get you thinking.
What we do know is that the cost of doing nothing could be a great deal more than the cost of getting some advice.
Addressing succession with expert speakers
At our autumn debate, Orlando Bridgeman of Wrigleys Solicitors – who are kindly sponsoring the event – will explore a range of legal problems which often occur, such as land ownership, tenancies, wills and partnerships, as well as managing the expectations of non-farming siblings.
We are fortunate to be joined by Andrew Robinson from Armstrong Watson business advisers and accountants, will talk us through business structure, taxation and how to make the most out of your relationship with your accountant.
Heather Wildman, MD of Saviour Associates and a succession facilitator will talk about the emotional dimensions of succession planning, including effective communication, approaching retirement with older family members and tips to avoid conflict.
Arable and beef farmer, Annabel Hamilton who farms 2,500 acres along the Berwickshire coast with her father Will, will share her farm’s succession process and the knowledge transfer which Annabel feels is exciting, enjoyable and essential.
The discussion will be chaired by Rebecca Horne, a consultant for Dee, Atkinson & Harrison, who are also sponsoring the event. Rebecca has a special interest and knowledge of succession planning and dispute resolution, and works throughout the region advising landlords and tenants.
‘More important than ever’ – register your place at our Autumn Debate
When it comes to succession planning, we all have a different starting point, but starting conversations early usually prevents the need for a difficult conversation at a later date.
Many farmers wish they had discussed it earlier and sadly it can be too late once relationships have broken down.
Often we are so busy working on the ‘now’ that we don’t stop and think about what will happen in 10 years’ time, but with big changes to British agriculture on the horizon, it is more important than ever to plan ahead and assess what effect these changes may have to our farming businesses.
We warmly invite you to join us at 7pm on Tuesday 16th November for supper and debate. To register your free place to attend in-person, email email@example.com
For those unable to attend, the Autumn Debate will be streamed live on the Future Farmers of Yorkshire’s Facebook page.
With kind thanks to our sponsors