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East Anglia: Deadline looms for entries to Suffolk Agricultural Association’s Best Alternative Land Enterprise (BALE) award

06:00 06 September 2013

Log Cabin Holidays, winners of the 2012 BALE award from l-r: Vicki Havers with husband Jonathan, sponsor Jonathan Long, Ashton KCJ; Peter Havers, Stephen Cobbald, SAA chairman elect and Amy Havers

Log Cabin Holidays, winners of the 2012 BALE award from l-r: Vicki Havers with husband Jonathan, sponsor Jonathan Long, Ashton KCJ; Peter Havers, Stephen Cobbald, SAA chairman elect and Amy Havers

Picture:James Fletcher

The closing date of 16 September is fast approaching for the Suffolk Agricultural Association’s annual farm diversification competition.

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EADT-County Life 
Pic Simon Parker

Farmer Peter Havers has had to diversify at his pig farm in Athelington Hall near Eye.

EADT 31/5/08EADT-County Life Pic Simon Parker Farmer Peter Havers has had to diversify at his pig farm in Athelington Hall near Eye. EADT 31/5/08

The Best Alternative Land Enterprise Award recognises the entrepreneurial skills of East Anglia’s farmers and is open to farmers from across Suffolk, Norfolk, Essex and Cambridgeshire.

There have been many and varied businesses enter previously, including holiday lets, conference facilities, farm shops and childrens nurseries since the BALE awards were first launched 22 years ago by the Suffolk Agricultural Association (SAA) and backed by long term sponsors solicitors Ashton KCJ.

This year’s judges are the SAA President Stephen Cobbald, Jonathan Long, Partner and Head of Agriculture & Estates, Ashton KCJ and Peter Havers, winner of last year’s award; judging takes place on September 23 and 24.

There are prizes for first and second place in the competition, there is also a special category for Best Newcomer to the competition and Best Green Award. All competitors will receive two complimentary places to the SAA’s black tie Awards Dinner on October 24.

The entry fee is £20 and entries are judged on their commercial, creative and practical merits, as well as their contribution to the regional economy. Entry forms can be downloaded at www.suffolkshow.co.uk/awards/bale2013entry or email sue.bennitt@suffolkshow.co.uk

This year sees the third year of the Award sponsored by the newly merged firm, Ashton KCJ. Formerly Ashton Graham, the firm merged with Kester Cunningham John in October 2011. Both firms had been advising the region’s agricultural community for many years and the new firm continues this strong tradition.

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