Blooming success at Hale Village Monitor Farm

Wednesday, 26 June 2019

The wildflower margins planted by Hale Village farmer Bill Webb and his son were the talk of the meeting at the new AHDB Monitor Farm launch.

Over the last few years Bill has planted 3m wildflower strips along a public footpath, partly to protect people from farm equipment, but also because they do wonders for the image of farming.

Bill said: “The wildflower strips are looking really good at the moment. People from the village, and people who’ve visited for the launch meeting, were all really impressed. I’ve had loads of comments about them – people in the village especially. It’s great PR for farming.”

Having seen the wildflower mixes at the annual Cereals event for many years running, Bill thought they would be a great addition to the farm.

He now has about 700 metres of 3m-wide wildflower margins, sown with Syngenta’s Operation Pollinator annual wildflower mix.

Around 30 farmers joined Bill and his son Joe on Thursday 20 June for an introduction to the AHDB Monitor Farm programme, which brings together groups of like-minded farmers to learn from each other and from industry experts.

Bill added: “I’m really looking forward to learning with the Monitor Farm programme, over the next three years. The meetings fuel investigation and discussion, and makes you stand back and take a look at the farm from a distance.”

For more information on getting involved with the Monitor Farm programme, visit or contact Michelle Nuttall, AHDB Knowledge Exchange Manager, on 07778 143404 or