Young valuers of the future

Surveyors converge at Aberystwyth

10 August 2017

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Young agricultural valuers of the future converged at Aberystwyth University in July where speakers from Michelmores Law LLP, Owen & Owen, Geraint John Planning, the Valuation Office Agency, Agri Advisor, and from the University itself, presented lectures on subjects ranging from Landlord & Tenant matters, agricultural valuation, and seed and crop identification, to statutory compensation claims, farm agency, and the UK’s complicated and fast-changing standpoint on agricultural policy post-Brexit.

The annual two-day CAAV (Central Association of Agricultural Valuers) Tutorial was the twenty-ninth such event held by the CAAV Wales Group, and the third organised by Chris Hyde, Associate Director with Cooke & Arkwright’s Land Agency. It forms part of the academic curriculum in preparation for the CAAV exams in late autumn, as well as CPD (Continual Professional Development) for those already qualified.

Chris said, “The Wales Group Tutorials are traditionally held in Aberystwyth because of the excellent amenities the university offers, including modern classroom facilities together with use of their laboratories where we get a hands-on approach to seed and crop identification.”

The first day is held in the classrooms and laboratory at the University’s Institute of Biological, Environmental & Rural Sciences (IBERS) building, and the second day is spent out on site on a working farm within the vicinity.  The course is also legendary for the intervening night out in Aberystwyth, where delegates familiarise themselves with the local hostelries within the town!  The course is not exclusive to Welsh surveyors, and we have entertained CAAV members from as far away as Cumbria, Devon, and East Anglia.

Rhian Howells, Rural Surveyor with Cooke & Arkwright who has made the transition from commercial law and is studying for both her CAAV and RICS exams, also attended. “The course was genuinely useful. The day at the farm particularly gives a good flavour of what the exam is going to be like. It helps to gain an in-depth understanding of the range of agricultural matters which need to be taken into consideration on a daily basis in the field as a rural surveyor.”

Chris Hyde organised the venue, itinerary, speakers and accommodation. He said, “The hardest part is finding a farm to participate, bearing in mind there is an element of inconvenience as the farmers have to provide equipment and livestock as well as venue facilities – and often tea and biscuits as well!

“This year’s event was held at Brennan Farm, New Cross, under the kind invitation of Alwyn and Rhian Davies. We would like to extend our thanks to them and also to all of the speakers who gave their time

Chris is the tutorial organiser for the Wales Group CAAV and is an examiner with Wales & West Midlands CAAV board of examiners.

Cooke & Arkwright have provided independent property consultancy services to the College for a number of years. This advice has included property valuations and negotiation around property acquisition and disposal, rent reviews and the preparation and negotiation of the College’s farm business tenancy agreement. The College has consistently received an excellent and professional service from Cooke & Arkwright and their valuable support to the College is recognised and appreciated.

Bob Bates, Director, Coleg Gwent