THERE’S a new grass roots NFU contact for farmers in Herefordshire, Worcestershire and Shropshire.

Jonathan Evans is the new Shropshire NFU county adviser and the new secretary of the NFU regional poultry and livestock boards.

The 27-year-old, whose family farm livestock near Ellesmere, took up the post after predecessor, Helen Cork, left at the beginning of October to travel and work in New Zealand.

He joins the team from the NFU headquarters at Stoneleigh Park where he was a policy adviser in the land management services team.

Jonathan looks forward to working with Herefordshire and Worcestershire poultry and livestock farmers and to working on home soil.

“This is a great opportunity and I’m really pleased to be working on home soil, meeting farmers and working with NFU members to benefit their businesses.

“I know the NFU is leaving no stone unturned in tackling industry issues, lobbying decision makers and trying to improve farmers’ cash flow forecasts,” he said.

His work will include keeping up pressure on the Rural Payments Agency (RPA) to deliver payments on time, meeting regularly with industry stakeholders, including the banks, and continuing to push retailers to source and promote more British produce.

“Our industry is facing difficult times, however I know what a great and diverse farming county Shropshire is and I believe that together we are up for the challenge.

“I’m really looking forward to getting out on the ground to meet members, working with regional director, Rob Newbery, Shropshire NFU county chairman, Richard Yates, other members and the team.

“I hope to meet many new farming faces at upcoming autumn events, along with some familiar ones and know that together we can have a real impact,” said Jonathan.

Jonathan graduated from Harper Adams with a degree in rural enterprise and land management and worked at a variety of farms and as an agri-contractor before he spent two years working and travelling in Australia and New Zealand.

He joined the NFU in May 2014 after working for an organic control body near Shrewsbury across a range of farming sectors.

A keen cricketer he plays for Knockin and Kinnerley Cricket Club.

Mr Yates, who farms near Bridgnorth, thanks Helen Cork for her “considerable contribution to Shropshire NFU.”

“Helen brought great enthusiasm and energy to her role and I am sure she will embrace her new opportunities with the same zest.

“I am delighted to see fellow Salopian Jonathan Evans join us as Helen’s successor, I’m sure he will be an asset to the county,” he said.