Michael Sly, Board Chairman
I farm in the Fens of North Cambridgeshire and South Lincolnshire, farming 2,000 hectares, across three farming businesses. The family in various parts have been involved in drainage and farming in the Fens since the 17th Century.
Growing wheat, spring barley, sugar beet, spring beans, oilseed rape, marrowfat peas and condiment mustard. The farms are part of the RSPB’s Farmland Bird Friendly Zone, which now covers over 4,000 hectares and landscape scale benefits covering 230 square kilometres. Also with fellow mustard growers we are working on a landscape scale bee and pollinator project with Unilever.
I am currently Chairman of the NFU Sugar Board representing 3,000 growers. I have also served as NFU County Chair and the Council delegate for Cambridgeshire the most farmed county in the UK, chairing the East Anglian regional board for four years, as well serving as Chair of the NFU Audit committee.
I am Chairman of the North Level District Internal Drainage Board, serving 34,000 hectares. I spent 10 years on the Anglian Northern Regional Flood and Coastal Committee. I am currently chairman of the English Mustard Growers and Vice Chairman of Condimentum LTD for the milling of mustard seeds and processing mint leaf in Norwich, working with Unilever’s Colman’s brand.
Other interests include hosting Open Farm and Vintage Weekend every June, with 12,500 visitors attending over the weekend, welcoming over 65,000 people since 2006. Promoting food production, environmental benefits on farm and community inter action.
I am Chairman of the Thorney Society which promotes the history, architecture of the parish and runs the village Museum. Also a member of the East of England Agricultural Society’s Council.