Our aim is to help you make the best of your business assets. Traditional areas of surveys and valuations are skills you may well have called upon in the past but there are now many other ways to unlock the potential of your holding, our partners respected in their fields can help advise you on the best way forward.

The Longer View Articles

Every estate is different but each can benefit from a creative, strategic approach led by experts, as demonstrated by a unique project at a prestigious Cotswolds shooting estate. Find out more about the breadth and depth of the role of an estate manager.

Read the full article here.

Dealing with compulsory purchase can be complicated, emotional and draining. Those affected need calm heads and experienced experts on their side, and need to take action sooner rather than later – Mark Warnett explains why.

Read the full article here.

Whilst for many estates probate is a fairly uneventful process, in some circumstances, it can be lengthy and somewhat demanding. One of the issues that can cause disruption is the valuation of assets. 

Read the full article here.

World Mental Health Day took place on Thursday 10th October and in response to this I saw a poignant picture on social media of 52 pairs of wellies lined up in a farmyard representing the number of farmers who committed suicide last year. 

Princes William and Harry have certainly raised the profile of mental health having had their own personal experiences following the death of their mother but the anguish being felt by many farmers across the country is evidenced by the statistics that show around one farmer per week took his or her own life last year.

Farming is a lonely life, with many solitary hours spent driving machinery or feeding and tending to livestock and this gives those people a lot of time to dwell on all the problems that they may be facing in their business or personal life without anyone to provide a different perspective or wider support.

Levels of depression in the industry are thought to be increasing and suicide rates in farmers are among the highest in any occupational group according to the Office of National Statistics (ONS). Risk of suicide is also higher amongst those working in specific agricultural roles such as harvesting crops and rearing animals where the rates are almost twice the national average according to the ONS.

The Agricultural industry also has one of the poorest safety records of any occupation in the UK and stress is often a key factor in many of the accidents, injuries and illnesses taking place on farms. Stress is something that many farmers face at some point and is an important contributor to mental health problems. It can come from many sources such as financial pressures resulting from market fluctuations, livestock disease, poor harvests, uncertainty created by policy issues such as those we may face following Brexit and the increasing administrative burden complying with new and changing legislation which at times can become overwhelming.

The situation is compounded by the fact that farming tends to be an innately conservative culture and some still perceive a stigma attached to mental health. This can hinder people’s willingness to speak about the issue and to seek help for themselves.

Therefore, the message must be to those who are suffering that they should take that first and very important step to speak to someone about how they are feeling and then seek professional support.  If Princes William and Harry have had the courage to speak out publically then farmers or farm workers who are experiencing similar difficulties should feel no shame or stigma seeking help – one would not struggle on with a broken arm without seeking treatment and mental health issues need to be treated in the same way. 

For further information, contact James Stephen, Partner (james.stephen@carterjonas.co.uk / 01865 404406), or your local Carter Jonas office.

@ James Stephen
James Stephen
01823 428860 email me about James
@ Mark Warnett
Mark Warnett 
020 7518 3246 email me about Mark Warnett
@ Mark Charter
Mark Charter
Head of Estate Management
01865 404406 email me about Mark

James is a Partner who heads up the South West Rural team based in Taunton.  He specialises in rural estate management, landlord and tenant matters, valuation, compulsory purchase and compensation, rural grant and subsidy regimes, rural planning issues and farm and estate diversification opportunities.

He is a RICS registered valuer and appointed valuer for the Agricultural Mortgage Corporation (AMC).

James has two children that absorb much of his free time but during the odd window of opportunity he enjoys fly fishing, playing tennis and cricket and is an armchair rugby enthusiast.

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Mark is part of the infrastructures team and his principal role is advising on compulsory purchase, compensation and valuation. He acts for claimants, who’s residential, commercial, agricultural or development property is affected by compulsory purchase, and also for acquiring authorities promoting compulsory purchase orders, land assembly and the acquisition of rights over land.

Mark has advised on compulsory purchase and valuation since starting practicing as a surveyor in 2006 and has represented significant clients on schemes including the Northern Line Extension, Bexhill to Hastings Link Road, A21 Dualling and the Bank Station Capacity Upgrade. Other than compulsory purchase his professional background is in rural surveying and agricultural property valuation, and he is a RICS Registered Valuer and a Fellow and examiner for the Central Association of Agricultural Valuers.

I can provide advice on:

Mark is a Partner and a member of the firm's Rural Division. He is Head of Estate Management and has experience of advising private and institutional clients on all aspects of estate management, strategic advice, valuation and professional consultancy matters across the rural and residential sectors. Mark’s extensive experience in advising clients in the aforementioned areas allows him to as an expert witness in valuation and other property matters. Additionally, he is a member of the Development Committee of The Oxford Playhouse, a trustee of The Lady Nuffield Home, Oxford and is a member of the Consultee Group to The Oxfordshire Woodlands Project.

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