Richard Bramley

Richard Bramley

NFU Environment Forum chair

Richard Bramley is an arable farmer from near York, farming 550 acres of combinable and root crops. In 2013, he was the winner of the RSPB Nature of Farming Award (Northern) and in 2014 won the ‘Tye Trophy’ for excellence in farming and conservation.

He invests in his own professional development and is a Fellow of Institute of Agricultural Management, a qualified agronomist and a CEnv (Chartered Environmentalist).

Richard is also actively involved with university research and education.

Alongside his arable operations, Richard is involved in a diverse range of environmental work on his farm, which began on a largely voluntary basis.

All watercourses are protected with 7m diverse margins and hedgerows are managed sensitively with roughly 12,000 of mixed hedgerow species types have been planted on Richard’s farm and 2,000 mixed trees.

He has approximately 8ha of grassland, which is mainly riverbanks and field corners, with no nutrient inputs, encouraging a diversity of plant species.

A number of bird and bat boxes have been put in place around the farm, and in the past he has installed vole pontoons, kingfisher fishing stakes and a grass snake nest.

Since 2007, Richard has used 'cover cropping' on the farm, which is temporary crop and is used to preserve nutrients and protect soils at key times in the farming calendar, now covering over 50ha on one 200ha farm.

He has also worked in close conjunction with Yorkshire Water to protect water quality and improve the environment.

In addition, Richard grows between 7 and 8 different crop types which adds to the diversity on his farm. Twenty years of bird surveys have provided an important picture of the improvements this work has delivered.

Solar power generated on the farm provides 100% of electricity for Richard’s farmhouse, office and four luxury converted holiday barns and events room. All heating is provided using low energy biomass district heating.

Public engagement is important to Richard and he hosts visits for fellow farmers and other organisations with an interest in the countryside, as well as public speaking on farming and the environment.