Women in Farming Autumn Gathering

If you missed our Women In Farming Network’s Autumn Gathering on 13th October 2020, or you would like to watch it again, the full length video stream is now available to view in the window above.

This was the Network’s first ever virtual event, delivered with support from Yorkshire Agricultural Society and the Yorkshire Rural Support Network. We are hugely grateful to sponsors Savills and The Prince’s Countryside Fund, and the support of Barclays Agriculture, without whom this event would not have been possible.

In this video – which was originally streamed live – we hear from a fabulous line up of inspirational women, each of whom shares unique insights into their lives working with or within the agricultural industry and rural communities.

Each speaker offers their own take on what has been ‘A Momentous Year’ and afterwards, answer questions from our viewers.

We are very grateful to Yorkshire Rapeseed Oil, Lottie Shaws, Anna’s Happy Trotters and Fodder for putting up some generous prizes for the 25th, 50th, 75th and 100th people who registered for this event.

In the video you will hear from:

Judith Wood

Judith Wood

Barclays Agricultural Manager

Judith will chair our Autumn Gathering. A farmer’s daughter, Judith is also married to a farmer and is a mother to three teenage children.

She has worked for Barclays for 35 years, during which she has worked in all areas of banking. Judith has been an Agricultural Manager for the last 15 years and works as part of a team of Agricultural Managers across Yorkshire and the North East.

Her job involves looking after a portfolio of customers based across North Yorkshire, assisting them with lending requirements as well as their day-to-day banking needs.

Rachel Hallos

Rachel Hallos

Farmer and West Riding NFU Chair

Rachel Hallos farms with her husband Stephen, son Sam and daughter Anna, at Beeston Hall, Ripponden, West Yorkshire. It was never her intention to be a farmer but she believes that you have to deal with whatever life throws at you – and if that’s a career change then so be it!

Having completely changed their business model to farm environmentally, the Hallos family have built a pedigree suckler herd and a top quality hill flock. With their latest venture of a holiday let booming, Rachel’s job is now to ensure that the farm continues to thrive for the next generation and enables them to withstand any future changes in farming policy.

Rachel has been a past Chair and President of the Salers Cattle Society and is the current West Riding NFU County Chair and NFU North East Regional Chair.

Dr Caroline Knott

Dr Caroline Knott

Consultant Psychologist at Tees, Esk & Wear Valley NHS Foundation Trust

Dr Caroline Knott is a Consultant Applied Psychologist and specialises in Adult Mental Health for the NHS in North Yorkshire, where she works with people who experience severe and enduring mental health problems and crisis presentations.

Caroline has a farming background and has a good understanding of the complex stress triggers faced by farmers today. She has contributed to the increase in mental health support and suicide awareness for rural and farming communities.

Caroline has supported the Great Yorkshire Show, the NFU and the Yorkshire Agricultural Society over recent years and will be happy to discuss the role of women in farming in relation to self-care and mental health awareness.

Susan Briggs

Susans Briggs

Director of The Tourism Network

Susan has worked in tourism marketing for over 30 years. In the 29 years since she started The Tourism Network marketing consultancy, she has helped more than 8,000 tourism businesses.

Now based in Masham, Susan had lived and worked in London for 20 years before returning to her native Yorkshire. Vastly experienced, her career has involved working in incoming tour operating, running countless events and festivals, as well as a B&B and a holiday cottage. She runs both the Dales Tourism Network and North York Moors Tourism Network on a voluntary basis, and is part of the group that organises Masham Sheep Fair.

Susan writes a weekly marketing blog and her articles often feature in The Yorkshire Post.

Olivia Spilman

Olivia Spilman

Spilman Farming

With a colourful CV including qualifying as a building surveyor, working for Asda and helping independent veterinary businesses to develop their marketing and training needs, on paper, the world of farming would not seem to be an obvious career move.

Olivia started working for the family farm in 2017 after having the arrival of her son, Wilfred. The farm’s subsequent cafe and play barn was a maternity leave project that has since become her full time career, hobby and second child!

As the farm has evolved to become a popular family day out destination, Olivia’s role has expanded. She sits on the Management Team, reporting into the four farm partners: Tom, Joss, Sally and Richard Spilman.

Church Farm began as a soft fruit picking destination nearly 50 years ago and has evolved to become a Pick Your Own farm that offers soft fruits including 15 acres strawberries, raspberries, pumpkins, potatoes and sunflowers. Olivia and the team run an on-site farm shop, operate take-away food kiosks year-round and a play barn facility which is currently closed due to Covid-19.

The Rt Revd Dr Helen-Ann Hartley

The Rt Revd Dr Helen-Ann Hartley

Bishop of Ripon

The Rt Revd Dr Helen-Ann has been the Bishop of Ripon since early 2018. Prior to this she was Bishop of Waikato in New Zealand’s North Island. She is a trustee of the Farming Community Network (FCN) and is the deputy lead bishop in the Church of England for rural matters.

Dr Helen-Ann was a speaker at the 2020 Oxford Farming Conference where she took part in a panel discussion on food, farming and faith. She also delivered an online reflection as part of this year’s Great Yorkshire Virtual Show.

Born in Edinburgh, she grew up in the distinctly urban environment of Sunderland. However, farming is part of her DNA – with a family history of crofting in the Scottish highlands – and her time in New Zealand exposed her to the world of agriculture in the Waikato region which is especially renowned for its dairy farming. Dr Helen-Ann is a passionate advocate for rural matters in print and broadcast media, and seeks to advocate for issues of mental health and wellbeing in particular.

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