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Cumbria Agricultural Chaplaincy Newsletter – March 2024

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Thank you for your on-going support of the farming and rural community in Cumbria. I hope this briefing is useful.

Please do contact me on 07825 424981 or email if you have any queries or require leaflets etc

With best wishes and huge thanks for all you do,

Amanda – Coordinator, and member of the agricultural community

Cumbria Agricultural Chaplaincy – News

  • Gathering of Agricultural Chaplains

Date for your diary – Thursday 9th May 12 noon till 2pm.

The most popular date for the agricultural chaplains to meet and share experiences over lunch has been established and secured. We will confirm the venue as soon as possible but please do add this date into your diary – it will definitely take place in or around Penrith.

  • Health checks at Auction Marts

Our next health checks at J36 – The Rural Auction Centre, Crooklands:

o Tuesday 19th March

o Thursday 18th April

o Thursday 16th May

o Thursday 13th June

This usually takes place between 10am and 1pm but there can be some variation on the day due to our wonderful NHS nurses' workload. This is a great place to signpost anyone in the farming community struggling with not only their physical but their mental health who might not have chance, or want to go, to the doctors.

New online support for farming's "accidental counsellors"

You might find this useful yourself or worth passing to someone you come across in your role. The University of Exeter and Farming Health Hub have created a new online resource hub – – which aims to help people who work with farmers, and who often find themselves lending a listening ear to those in distress – feel more confident about promoting the well-being of clients who are facing challenging times.
News and information from organisations Cumbria Agricultural Chaplaincy is a member of, or linked to:

  • Modern Slavery Partnership – Cumbria

Here is Jo talking about the journey so far and hopes for the future:

  • The Arthur Rank Centre

The latest newsletter from the ARC

  • Royal Countryside Fund – Farming Support Group news

Schedule of upcoming seminars:

  • March – no seminar as they are holding our annual FSGI Conference
  • April 8th – Update on BPS, Enviro-schemes and International Trade with Richard Wordsworth and Gail Soutar from the NFU
  • April 15th – Discussion on 'Engaging with your target audience at agricultural shows'

On Friday 26 January, DEFRA held a webinar for farmers to go through the actions and payments available through their environmental land management schemes in 2024. This webinar was held in collaboration with the Farming Advice Service (FAS) and The Farming Forum (TFF). In this post, DEFRA summarise the themes and top-voted questions covered in the webinar with responses and links to guidance. You mind find this useful as background information as you speak to people experiencing or thinking about the changes to the farming offer.

The following provides a link to up-and-coming webinars (or ones taking place recently but not yet on the blog). I think the livestock and grass focus, and upland focus are particularly relevant to Cumbria.

  • 12th March at 11am Farming Equipment and Technology Fund 2024 (FETF24)
  • 14th March at 11am The farming offer in 2024: livestock and grassland focus
  • 27th March at 11am The farming offer in 2024: upland focus

Chaplaincy News from The Methodist Church

Here is a link to latest newsletter:

Sarah Hulme Methodist Rural Mission & Ministry Officer, has asked me to pass this message to agricultural chaplains...

"Are there any passionate rural folk in your area who maybe feel unheard at Connexional level & would appreciate the opportunity to add their voice of lived experience? Might they be able to prioritise an hour online this Spring 2024? The rural mission & ministry officer would love to be in touch with them. As part of a planned wider piece of work alongside JPIT, Action for Hope & EDI, we're collecting indications of interest. Please send in your name, email & areas of rural interest (e.g. rural & net zero/ agricultural chaplaincy/ rural issues in general/ rural inclusion/ rural poverty/ ...) to Please feel free to share with others who might be interested."

  • Churches Together in Cumbria

The March newsletter is now available and can be viewed

Industry or relevant news/information:

  • Hidden Hardship

This may be of interest to you in our rural context.

  • An interesting read : Food versus the environment – unintended consequences of the SFI

Even though the purpose of the new Environmental Land Management schemes (ELMs), such as the Sustainable Farming Incentive (SFI) is to produce food in harmony with the environment, there may be unintended consequences, not only for individual farm businesses but the industry as a whole.

© 2024 – Cumbria Methodist District