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Snow-hit Farmers Urged to Complete Questionnaire

With more than 200 farm and horticultural buildings suffering major structural damage during the recent snowstorms, NFU Scotland is urging all affected farmers and growers to complete the Scottish Government questionnaire issued to assess the situation.

Findings from the survey will help inform the decisions taken by a new short-life working group set up by the Scottish Government to consider how those affected can be helped.  The working group will be made up of industry bodies including NFUS, technical experts and insurers and will be chaired by Scotland's Chief Agricultural Officer Drew Sloan.

Copies of the questionnaire are available from the Scottish Government and NFU Scotland websites (see notes for web links to surveys), local Scottish Government area offices, NFU Scotland group secretaries and NFUS regional managers.   These should be returned to local SGRPID offices by Monday, 25 January.   Initial findings will be prepared by Thursday, 28 January.

NFU Scotland Chief Executive, James Withers said:

“From the feedback we have received from members and staff, a significant number of farm and horticultural buildings were brought down or substantially damaged by the sheer volume of snow that fell during late December and early January. 

“Having important farm buildings out of commission for any length of time has huge implications for any business affected and we welcome the commitment of the Scottish Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs, Richard Lochhead, to assess the extent of the problem and look at ways of assisting those hit.

“The survey looks at the extent of damage to buildings and contents, the implications for livestock or crops and the farm’s position with regards to insurance.  It also asks if any interim measures have had to put in place to cope with stock or crops and asks if there are plans to replace or repair the damaged site.  

“Information gleaned from this survey will help inform the working group and we would urged all farmers with buildings damaged as a result of the recent snow to complete the survey in the next week and send it to their local SGRPID area office.”  

Notes to Editors.

  • The remit of the working group is to:
    • Analyse returned questionnaires from farmers suffering damage.
    • Establish the geographical spread and location of the premises affected.
    • Establish the range and type of buildings affected.
    • Establish the extent of damage incurred especially in relation to the application of current building regulations.
    • Establish the insurance position.
    • Identify requirements for replacement facilities and establish the capacity for construction within the desired timeframe
    • Make recommendations in relation to Government action.
  • The group will first meet when data has been gathered from questionnaires submitted by those affected not later than January 25.
  • The questionnaire is available from local NFUS Group Secretaries, NFUS Regional managers and on the front page of the NFU Scotland website at www.nfus.org.uk/uploadedFiles/Campaigns/winterfreeze4.pdf
  • Questionnaires are also available in RPID Area offices and at www.scotland.gov.uk/agriculture

Ends

Contact Bob Carruth on 0131 472 4006

Date Published:

News Article No.: 07/10


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