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Jeremy's Blog - 11th June 2020

Inheritance Tax is estimated to have raised £5.1 billion in 2019/20, less than half the yield from SDLT, making it one of the UK’s smaller taxes but touching very sensitively on individuals and families. Its tax take has been rising, largely on the back of rising house prices bringing more people into its net. Some countries have abolished it and George Osborne’s offer in 2007 of a £1 million Nil Rate Band between a couple was enough to deter Gordon Brown from holding an election. In...

NEW PODCAST on Coming out of Covid

The Covid-19 pandemic and its restrictions have changed the way we live and work this spring. Many say that life will never be quite the same again. But what does the future look like for businesses? What changes might last? How does the economy recover? In this episode, Jeremy Moody tackles these big questions and more as we navigate our journey out of Covid. Also available on Apple, Spotify and Google Podcasts. Catch-up on previous episodes here. ​...

Northern Ireland to allow retail to re-open from 12th June

Northern Ireland's Economy Minister has announced that non-essential retail premises in the province can re-open from Friday 12th June, provided that the necessary safety measures are observed for customers and staff and that there is no increase in new cases of Covid-19.

Ban on evictions in England & Wales extended

The Government has announced that the ban on evictions from private and social rented housing, put in place to protect tenants during the coronavirus pandemic, will be extended to 23rd August 2020.

Welsh COVID-19 Dairy Hardship Fund to open for applications from 18th June

Further to DEFRA's confirmation of the English COVID-19 Dairy Hardship Fund opening for applications from 18th June 2020, the Welsh Government has confirmed that the Welsh fund will open on the same day. Eligible Welsh dairy farmers need to show they suffered a reduction of 25% or more in the average milk price they received in April and May, when compared with February 2020. Up to £10,000 funding is available to cover approximately 70% of the lost income. Farmers will need to provide...

English COVID-19 Dairy Hardship Fund to open for applications from 18th June

DEFRA has confirmed that the COVID-19 dairy hardship fund announced on 6th May will open for applications from 18th June 2020. Up to £10,000 funding will be available for eligible dairy farmers to cover up to 70% of losses experienced during April and May due to the COVID-19 outbreak. To be eligible, dairy farmers need to show there was a reduction of 25% or more in the base price paid for their milk in April 2020 compared with February 2020. Guidance and the application form should be...

Jeremy's Blog - 4th June 2020

Looking beyond the virus restrictions, virtually every lobby group argues that its cause is further validated by the experience of the pandemic and the measures taken to tackle it. Those competing perceptions will frame the arguments we will see later this year. The largest arguments may be over the shape of future economic policy. Will there be a simple imperative to achieve recovery or will that be consciously built around climate change, environmental and other green objectives? What might...

Environmental projects given support to attract private sector investment

Four environmental projects to protect and restore key habitats have been selected for funding under a pilot scheme looking to encourage private sector investment in such projects. The four projects receiving this funding are:- Devon Wildlife Trust - Restoration of the River Caen wetlands; Rivers Trust - Natural Flood Management in the River Wyre catchment; NFU - Poole Harbour Nutrient Management Scheme; and Moors for the Future Partnership - Peatland restoration in the Pennines. Further...

Vacancies for Landowner Lay Members of the Welsh Agricultural Land Tribunal

The Welsh Agricultural Land Tribunal is seeking to appoint 3 landowner lay members to its panel. Successful applicants should have a good knowledge and experience of land management in Wales and be able to bring that to bear in considering cases. The closing date for applications is 10th June 2020 and further details are available on the Judicial Appointments Commission website....

NEW PODCAST on Borwick v Clear Water – the fish that got away!

The recent Court of Appeal decision in Borwick Development Solutions Limited v Clear Water Fisheries Limited considered whether solar panels and commercial fish pass to a buyer of the land. As the first such case on solar panels and with few legal precedents for the fish, Jeremy Moody gives a fascinating commentary on the case where fish possibly worth over £1m got away! Also available on Apple, Spotify and Google Podcasts. Catch-up on previous episodes here. ​...

Jeremy's Blog - 28th May 2020

The last two weeks have seen an easing in England of the Covid-19 restrictions on the property market, recovering activity in construction and increasing valuation work. With more negotiations and transactions, we may see how the property markets have moved. After 50 days of restrictions, there is the pent-up demand from many of the estimated 373,000 transactions said to have been stalled by the lockdown and then those newly motivated to buy this spring. Zoopla reports buyer interest to be 20...

Oxford Farming Conference goes virtual for 2021

The organisers of the Oxford Farming Conference have announced that it will be held as a one day digital event on Thursday 7th January 2021. From June to December 2020, OFC will hold monthly webinars to debate themes from previous conferences. To register for the free OFC Bitesize webinars, go to https://www.ofc.org.uk/conference/2021

Jeremy's Blog - 21st May 2020

Covid-19 now sits alongside Brexit as a radical accelerant of business change. The impact of the restrictions has been described as fast-forwarding business practice from March 2020 to, say, March 2025, with: the accelerated use of the internet, home working with remote contacts with clients, and the accelerated shock for much of retail and business use of public transport, aviation and hospitality. How might this balance out as restrictions slowly lift and businesses and people find how they...

NEW PODCAST on the energy efficiency regulations for let houses in Scotland

New Regulations have been made in Scotland which will prevent landlords from letting private rented residential property if it has an EPC in Band F or G. Originally due to come into force on 1st April 2020, their introduction was postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic. Kate Russell explains what the Regulations will require and offers some tips for landlords to plan head for their introduction. Also available on Apple, Spotify and Google Podcasts. Catch-up on previous episodes here....

Jeremy's Blog - 14th May 2020

The measures now taken in England to ease the Covid-19 restrictions on the property and development are very welcome as a contribution to movement in the economy. Some construction sites never stopped, others had re-started working and some transactions continued. Nonetheless, developers stalled much work, not risking more money on half-built houses that might not be sold, starving the pipeline for development and further chilling the economy. Intended moves have been frustrated – Zoopla...

Covid-19: Estate and Letting Agents may re-open in England

Estate agents and letting agents may re-open in England as the latest public health regulations, which come into force today (13th May 2020) now permit people to leave their homes in order to Visit estate or letting agents, developer sales offices or show homes View residential properties to look for a property to buy or rent Prepare a residential property to move in Move home Visit a residential property to undertake any activities required for the rental or sale of that property....

COVID-19: Government extends furlough scheme to October

The Government has announced that it will extend its furlough scheme to the end of October. From August, furloughed workers will be able to return to work part-time and employers will be asked to pay a contribution to the cost of furlough salaries. Further detail is available on the GOV.UK website.

Wales announces new funding to support dairy farmers affected by COVID-19

Wales' Rural Affairs Minister, Lesley Griffiths, has announced funding for eligible dairy farmers affected by the COVID-19 outbreak. Where dairy farmers have lost more than 25% of their income in April and May, they should be entitled for up to £10,000 funding to cover 70% of lost income. Further information is available on the gov.wales website.

Jeremy's Blog - 7th May 2020

In the last couple of weeks, meetings with Government and others that had been solely focused on the Covid-19 virus have begun to talk about other business once again. Post-Brexit policy re-joins the virus as an accelerant for change. The Agriculture Bill, as a priority piece of post-Brexit-legislation, returns to the Commons next week so we can be ready for 2021. The Environment Bill will probably follow. The negotiations over the future relationship with the EU have resumed with more detailed...

Agriculture Bill proceeds to next stage in Parliament

DEFRA has confirmed that the Agriculture Bill has been scheduled to complete its remaining stages in the House of Commons next Wednesday, 13th May 2020. It is still anticipated that the Bill should receive Royal Assent this summer.

New hardship fund to support dairy farmers affected by COVID-19 outbreak

DEFRA has announced a new hardship fund for English dairy farmers to assist with the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak. Each farmer should be able to access up to £10,000 funding to cover 70% of lost income during April and May. Please see the gov.uk website for a news release. Further details of this new hardship fund will be issued "in due course"....

Jeremy's Blog - 30th April 2020

We are in unusual times. It is, depending on the measure, 50 or 100 years since there was such a disease threat in the UK while we may now be in the sharpest contraction in the economy since the Great Freeze of 1709. This period has been very disruptive but, as members attest, professional work, from valuations to renewable energy, has continued. While transactions have fallen away, the market reports are of demand recovering. That Great Freeze thawed and life resumed. Out there, farming...

Pick for Britain - seasonal farm work

The Pick for Britain website https://pickforbritain.org.uk/ offers information and guidance on seasonal jobs in agriculture, with links to jobs, frequently asked questions and Government guidance. Those who have been furloughed by employers may be able to take on seasonal farm work if their contract of employment does not prevent it....

NEW PODCAST - Good Practice in Statutory Compensation Claims

Kate Russell of the CAAV explains why good practice is so important in compulsory purchase and other statutory compensation claims and highlights some of the key messages for agents involved in this work. Also available on Apple, Spotify and Google Podcasts. Catch-up on previous episodes here....

Extra month to claim for farm payments in England

Government has confirmed a one month extension to claim for farm payments in England. The 15th May deadline has been extended to 15th June 2020 for BPS 2020 applications and 2020 revenue claims for Countryside Stewardship and Environmental Stewardship. Please see the press release on the gov.uk website for further details....

Dairy sector crisis - Government to relax competition law

The Government has confirmed that it will temporarily relax some competition law so that the dairy processing industry can work together to manage supply and demand during the coronavirus pandemic. In recent weeks some dairy farmers have had to throw away fresh milk because their buyers have lost catering and food service contracts. It is hoped that the temporary relaxation will allow more fresh milk to be processed into longer-life products, such as cheese, butter, or skimmed milk powder....

Covid-19 and Rights of Way

Michelmores Solicitors has published a useful article on options for landowners facing busy rights of way during the coronavirus pandemic. The article can be found on the Michelmores website.

Bookings are now open for the CAAV’s new webinar on Contract Farming

Contract Farming Webinar Thursday, 30th April 2020 10:15 - 11:15am With many farmers and landowners needing to look hard at and review their businesses, joint ventures offer one possible answer. Contract farming agreements have developed as one form of joint venture approach that has suited many. They can be flexible, give access to skills and machinery but need to be done properly. Widely used in combineable cropping, the CAAV has updated its publication “Arable Farming with...

Lantra Scotland Skills Matching Service

Lantra Scotland has set up a Skills Matching Service to help rural and land-based businesses find staff with suitable skills and to help those looking for work to find suitable positions. Visit the Lantra Scotland website for more information.

NEW PODCAST on Electrical Safety Standards for Private Rented Property in England

New Regulations will come into force in England in 2020 which will require all landlords of residential premises to carry out electrical safety inspections every five years. New tenancies will need to comply from 1st July 2020 and existing tenancies from 1st April 2021. Kate Russell of the CAAV reviews the new Regulations and explains what they will mean for landlords and their advisers. Also available on Apple, Spotify and Google Podcasts. Catch-up on previous episodes here....

Wales confirms emergency measures to support farmers during COVID-19 outbreak

Wales' Minister for Environment, Energy and Rural Affairs, Lesley Griffiths, has confirmed that the Single Application Form (SAF) deadline is now extended to 15th June 2020, giving an extra month to complete forms. She has also confirmed that the Crop Diversification requirements are being removed for BPS 2020. To alleviate potential cash flow issues, an additional £5.5m has been allocated for the BPS and Glastir 2019 support scheme which has re-opened today for farmers who have not...

CLA and TFA Joint Statement in Challenging Times

In a joint statement the TFA and CLA, with DEFRA’s support, are appealing to all rural landlords and tenants to work together collaboratively and compassionately during this unprecedented time. The plea is made in respect of all tenancy matters, but particularly rent payments, notices to quit and finalising new tenancy agreements. The full statement is available on the TFA and CLA websites....

Covid-19: Advice for people with animals

The Government has published advice for pet owners and livestock keepers during the coronavirus outbreak: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-advice-for-people-with-animals