During 2005 the Brecknockshire Agricultural Society, the oldest such county association in the UK, celebrated its 250th anniversary. To mark the event it commissioned the IWA to produce this report charting the future of upland Wales to the year 2020. Building on known trends the report discusses a number of scenarios for the future of upland hill farming in Wales. It has three components:
1. A stock-take of the uplands as they exist today, placing them in their historical, economic and social context, and in community and cultural life.
2. The aspirations of six upland family farms are investigated, the examples chosen to reflect the considerable variety of circumstances that exist. They range from farms with the minimum of economic viability to more extensive holdings that are doing relatively well. Of course, all are having to adjust to the looming changes in European Commission farm support mechanisms.
3. Finally, the influences which may interact to create different futures for the uplands are examined.
“It could be that, in all possible futures, the outcome for this cherished constituent of Welsh national identity are all unfavourable for at least some stakeholders. If that is so then a far more wide-ranging debate about the future will need to be articulated, with all assumptions removed to develop a fresh perspective.”
Professor Peter Midmore
To read this report in the Welsh language a full copy is available free to be downloaded here (PDF 3.1MB)