Oliver Scott

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Bradford Farming consists of more than 4,800 hectares, including arable, sheep, wildflowers, residential and commercial property, leisure enterprises, industrial portfolios and rural opportunities.

Farm manager Oliver Scott says:

“Through a long-term vision, we are driven by the principle of looking after tomorrow and are committed to responsible and sustainable practices in everything we do.

“Guided by our heart and dedication to the future, regenerative farming was the obvious option for us and we have embraced the challenge of transforming from a traditional, short arable rotation, heavily relying on inputs and tillage, to a more sustainable, regenerative system.”

Bradford Farming has adopted a more regenerative system by including direct drilling and minimum tillage cultivations, incorporating cover cropping and working closely with agro-ecologists to sap test, reduce artificial fertiliser application and minimise the use of pesticides and sprays.

Oliver says: “We have begun poly cropping by growing blended cereal varieties and ascertaining a better understanding of soil and plant nutrients to grow stronger, more resilient plants which require less spray input.”

The current rotation stretches to nine years to maximise soil nutrition and preserve key elements. The rotation also includes salads, poppies and potatoes, which are grown by local producers.

The opportunity to grow a variety of crops for different markets helps to spread risk and improve land quality.

Utilising resources and skills, Oliver has diversified the farm to growing wildflowers. This allows smaller, less productive areas of land to be harnessed and maintained.

In 2022, Oliver introduced a flock of Romney sheep by entering into a sharefarm agreement with a neighbouring shepherd. The roaming flock grazes cover crops and cereals, which benefits the crops by reducing disease pressure and adding nutrients back to the soil.

He says: “By transitioning to regenerative agriculture, we had to be open and vulnerable. We were aware of the potential of reduced yields, however, we were delighted to maintain wheat yields of 8.5 tonnes/ha following our first harvest.

“This transition has been onerous, full of uncertainty and at times terrifying, but looking back on what we have achieved so far, I am overwhelmed with pride and excited about the future.