I really cannot gird myself to pass any comment on the current Brexit negotiations – it is just all too time consuming and too confusing for me. How is a member of ‘joe public’ meant to draw any conclusions, when those supposedly in the know are all pulling in different directions. My only thought would be that we need to get any deal done as I believe the whole EU project is going to implode anyway.

The level of my political correctness is legendary, but I do believe this recent trend of criticising people who say anything that could be upsetting to anyone to be bordering on the realms of wimpishness. Is the whole country becoming so wet that an individual is unable to take mere words on the chin that might vaguely upset them? This just smacks of some millennials and many older nondescripts admitting that they have not been prepared for life in the adult world. I have just read that telephone operators for the emergency services are being advised not to use the words ‘sir’ or ‘madam’ when answering calls. Now I am quite sure if a tree landed on my head I would not really care how they addressed me.

Vegans, by all accounts, are becoming increasingly vociferous and feel free to threaten those engaged in the production of meat while utilising quite disgusting and illegal methods. None of them have thought through the process by which ruminants enrich the soil and what products cannot be grown or garnered without their husbandry. Do we want the whole of this country to be solely fertilised with the application of ‘artificials’? What is the production of artificial fertilisers doing to the environment? How does it get transported to its place of use? All questions which these eco-warriors are not prepared to answer. Further, many of those malcontents are immature, and have so little stake in society, that joining the ranks of the activists probably convinces them that they have some purpose in life – that they have a legitimate excuse to break the law and further antagonise those who are working seven days a week doing something useful for the country. Grow up!

Murders and stabbing continue apace in London and elsewhere. The communities involved do nothing but complain that facilities to keep the young off the street are no longer being financed sufficiently, but as yet I have not seen anybody in the press or on television question the elders in such communities as to what steps they have or are taking to neutralise the problem.

None of the above has much to do with farming, and I myself am not contributing much to the industry. I currently own seven cull ewes and 40 small Kent Ewe lambs while plucking up the courage to buy some store lambs. The options are to secure some strong quality lambs which look well sold when compared to the price of finished sheep – or opt for a load of small long-termers that could ring the bell in April-May and early June. Could anybody with a crystal ball please contact me at my place of worship on a Tuesday?

PS I do have a nice crop of mushrooms – only there because farm animals and what they leave behind them have created the right conditions for natural growth.

Happy Christmas from Richard and Management.