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flooding

Local farmers sending feed to Somerset, Puxley. From the left, Robbie Manning, John Culley, John Manning and Pete Smith. PNL-140529-142726009

Local farmers sending feed to Somerset, Puxley. From the left, Robbie Manning, John Culley, John Manning and Pete Smith. PNL-140529-142726009

A group of generous farmers have sent a lorryload of relief supplies worth £3,000 to flood-hit Somerset.

A group of generous farmers have sent a lorryload of relief supplies worth £3,000 to flood-hit Somerset.

John and Mark Manning of Briary Wood Farm and Robin and John Culley of Hall Farm, both in Lillingstone Lovell, joined up with Mike Smith and his wife Lorna, of Green Farm in Puxley, to help fellow farmers whose land was blighted by floods over the winter.

Together they collected more than £1,300 in donations from friends and family and gathered spare fodder, worth almost £2,000, for farmyard animals to eat.

John Manning said: “We’d all seen the news back in the winter and how bad the flooding in Somerset was. And how farmers were having to relocate their livestock so we just felt we’d like to do something.

“Although the flooding has gone down, they’ve lost such a big area of their grazing and silage making area that they still need help.

“A few sunny days and it’s easy to forget other people’s situation.

“But it’s an ongoing problem through the year and into next winter because they’re not going to be able to make their normal stocks of fodder for next year.

“The floods have subsided but the chaos is still ongoing.”

Mr Smith said: “People think the problem has gone but it hasn’t.

“I was listening to a lot of reports just this week and all their grass has been killed.

“It all needs to be reseeded and regrown and they need to get rid of a lot of weeds and rubbish.

“You hear about it and think they will be OK – they’re English. But we need to help people in this country too.

“It won’t be a quick fix but it will help.”

The group met at the Smiths’ farm near Potterspury on Thursday, to load up the lorry, supplied by Cornwall-based RR Transport.

Mr Smith said the lorry-full of feed will be taken to a central collecting point in Somerset and he hopes many farmers can benefit from it.

His wife thanked the National Farmers’ Union (NFU) in Buckingham for its support and Block Aid for paying for the lorry.

She said: “It just struck a chord with everyone.

“You see things on the television and you want to help. It’s a goodwill gesture.”

Any other farmers who would like to offer help should contact Buckingham NFU.

 

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