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CEREDIGION county farm tenants will be asked to join a task and finish group to look at how best to maintain, improve and support their farms.

Ceredigion County Council has 16 parcels of land that it rents as farms – some including farmsteads and other bare land holdings – and the estate generates around £60,000 a year and has an “unencumbered” value of around £4.2million.

The council’s estate and how to manage it has been reviewed previously and an update on the work to develop it was discussed at corporate resources committee on Monday, October 3.

Improving the conditions of farm houses, keeping rents accessible while generating an income and the length of tenancies formed part of the discussions and it was agreed that more detailed work was required.

Investment to meet new pollution controls are required at wo dairy farms and there a number of tenancy agreements due to end in the next four years.

“I’m glad to see that Ceredigion County Council sees county farms as a strategic asset,” said Cllr Caryl Roberts, adding it was important they were accessible for young people who wanted to come into the industry.

This was also emphasised by Cllr Rhodri Evans who said the farms are “meant to be a step up” and an opportunity to start farming before moving on.

When a tenancy ends opportunities for renewable energy generation, delivering phosphate mitigation, diversification and research collaboration will be explored, a report to committee states.

The committee recommended that a task and finish group be set up and the views of tenants, as well as other farming bodies, would inform proposals for the future, with a “steer” for officers on what is desired.

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