The Northern Hill Farming Panel (The Panel) is an initiative created by and for the benefit of hill farmers in northern England. It functions as a farmer led alliance of hill farmers and is supported by the two National Park Authorities and three Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONBs) in the Northern Upland Chain Local Nature Partnership (NUCLNP). The Panel encourages discussion and seeks agreement between Defra, agency staff and farmers that benefit the farming community and the delivery of public benefits.
The Panel’s objectives are:
- To provide a voice for hill farmers from Northumberland, North Pennines, Nidderdale, Yorkshire Dales and the Forest of Bowland.
- To promote the distinctiveness of the Northern Upland Chain and its farming communities.
- To promote the beneficial environmental by-products hill farming in the Northern Upland Chain provides.
- To facilitate the exchange and dissemination of information.
- To encourage and support the next generation of hill farmers.
- To collect the evidence to support these objectives.
The Panel’s Membership comprises hill farmers from across the area covered by the NUCLNP. An Interim Panel of farmers established in June 2016. The Interim Panel decided to include representation from the two National Park Authorities, three Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, Natural England and the RSPB.
The interim panel members are:
- Richard Betton, chair & Teesdale farmer representative
- Greg Dalton, Weardale farmer representative
- Robert Phillipson, Allendale farmer representative
- Nick Howard, Allendale farmer representative
- Stuart Nelson , Breamish Valley farmer representative
- Rob Dyson, Coquetdale farmer representative
- Neil Robson , Hadrian Wall farmer representative
- Andrew Taylor, Tatham Fells farmer representative
- Peter Blackwell, Hodder Valley farmer representative
- Thomas Binns, Pendle Hill farmer representative
- Richard Harker, Upper Nidderdale farmer representative
- Neil Heseltine, Malhamdale farmer representative
- Garry Schofield, Wharfedale farmer representative
- James Hodgson, Wensleydale farmer representative
- Phillip Metcalfe, Swaledale farmer representative
- John Akrigg, Vice chair & Yorkshire Dales farmer representative
- Adrian Shepherd, NUCLNP HNVF lead, YDNPA
- Stephanie.Bird-Halton , Natural England
- Janet Fairclough, RSPB
- Rebecca Barrett, North Pennines AONB
- Mary Gough, Northumberland NPA
- Marian Wilby, Nidderdale AONB
- Sarah Robinson, Forest of Bowland AONB
- Helen Keep, Yorkshire Dales NPA