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Sunday, December 5, 2021

Bradford Estates shortlisted for Farm Business of the Year

A Shropshire land manager is celebrating after being shortlisted for a regional business award just months after investing in its farming credentials.

Farming manager Oliver Scott and Alexander Newport, managing director at Bradford Estates
Farming manager Oliver Scott and Alexander Newport, managing director at Bradford Estates

Bradford Estates, a family business with more than 900 years of history which spans 12,000 acres of land in the counties of Shropshire and Staffordshire, has been nominated for Farm Business of the Year at the Midlands Business Awards 2022.  

It comes after 4,000 acres of farmland was taken back in hand earlier this year to create an exciting new farming business, Bradford Farming, under the responsibility of a dedicated farm manager for the first time in 40 years. 

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“We’re absolutely delighted to have been shortlisted for Farm Business of the Year,” said Alexander Newport, managing director at Bradford Estates.  

“Our farmland is a huge asset to us and a really important part of our future plans so to be recognised in the Midlands Business Awards is a great achievement.”  

The new focus on farming is part of Alexander’s 100-year regeneration vision which will leave a healthy legacy for generations to come.  

The changes include new farming practices being adopted across the estates, including increasing ground cover crops and introducing grazing animals to reduce the need for fertilisers, direct drilling into the soil to plant crops instead of invasive tilling to reduce CO2 emissions, and ensuring habitats are created for natural insect predators such as ladybirds and starlings to reduce the need for chemical insecticides.  

Farming manager Oliver Scott added: “We’re at an incredibly exciting time of our farming journey at Bradford Farming and I can’t wait for what’s to come.   

“It’s been a challenge to start completely from scratch after taking our 4,000 acres of farmland back in hand which makes this nomination even more exciting. 

“We’ve booked a table and we’re looking forward to attending on the night!”   

Bradford Estates has recently announced plans to take a more active role in the management of its woodland, too. 

This will see the removal of diseased ash and larch trees across 1,250 acres of woodland to make space for new, UK-grown, resilient species – ensuring the woodlands’ long-term health.  

The awards, which are in their 15th year, will see businesses from all over Shropshire, Wolverhampton, Birmingham and beyond compete for various business accolades.  

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