Hayley Hanson wins UK Champion Farm Enterprise Award 2016

Environment Secretary Andrea Leadsom MP, Hayley Hanson and Peter Gott, Judge at the Countryside Alliance Finals. Photo Credit Peter Anderson www.andersonphotography.co.uk

 

On 22nd March 2017 the 2016 Countryside Alliance Awards, nicknamed the Rural Oscars, were handed out by the Environment Secretary Andrea Leadsom MP at a Parliamentary reception.  Businesses from across England and Wales, who had already won their regional title, came to Westminster to find out if they had taken the national title. Shortly after the prizes were handed out Westminster went into lockdown following a terrorist incident. While the attending rural business men and women, and Countryside Alliance staff, are all safe, our thoughts are very much with those affected by the incident. The professionalism and care shown by Parliamentary staff and security services was much appreciated and we all offer our thanks to them for their commitment.

At the Awards event in the House of Lords, the Environment Secretary told the assembled rural businessmen and women: “Rural businesses are not just the beating heart of our countryside – they are also a vital part of the UK’s economy, generating almost £230 billion every year. I’m really pleased the Countryside Alliance is honouring some of these hard working businesses and ensuring they get the recognition they deserve. Today’s winners and nominees represent the very best of Rural Britain and I’m delighted to celebrate the crucial role our post offices, farm shops and food start-ups play in connecting communities across the country.”

The Awards are the Countryside Alliance’s annual celebration of rural produce, skills, enterprise and heritage through our small hard-working businesses. They are now in their twelfth year and have become the definitive rural business award to win. In 2016 we received over 7,500 public nominations, which were whittled down and judged.

Tim Bonner said: “This category is dominated by feisty farming women, and our Champion is an energetic one-woman enterprise. The strand of the business for which this mother of three is being rewarded today began in 2011 when Hayley got married and couldn’t find someone in the UK to tan the hide of the heifer killed for their wedding breakfast. She has since developed a network of people who can help her do parts of the process with the hide coming back to her micro-tannery on-farm. Products made on site include hide rugs, footstools, handbags, bound notebooks and a recent contract with a pewter company to make bound hipflasks. Smaller pieces and hairs are also marketed and snapped up by fly fishermen for tying. Hayley recently won a contract in New York for goods to complement a range of luxury bathroom items. Hayley Hanson Hide markets her services direct to farmers,including those who have excelled in the show ring and at fat stock sales, and being able to produce a hair-on-hide of their favourite beast. Hayley uses local people, skills and resources, including a local engraver for hip flasks, Ludlow Bookbinders for diaries and notebooks etc. Hayley is community minded and keen to support organisations and groups, offering a percentage off goods for the local hunt and Young Farmers.”

To read the full story and results http://www.countryside-alliance.org/rural-oscars-go/

Environment Secretary Andrea Leadsom MP, Hayley Hanson and Peter Gott, Judge at the Countryside Alliance Finals. Photo Credit Peter Anderson www.andersonphotography.co.uk

Hayley Hanson