Investment at Bishop Burton

Colin Dennis and Phil Richardson (Green top) at the new cattle sheds, Bishop Burton College

Colin Dennis and Phil Richardson (Green top) at the new cattle sheds, Bishop Burton College

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Two new livestock buildings have been unveiled at Bishop Burton College.

One will house dairy heifers and the other is a new calf rearing building.

The investment in new buildings, over £150,000, will not only increase the efficiency and profitability of the dairy enterprise but enable the expansion of the college’s sucker herd.

Colin Dennis, Bishop Burton College’s farm director, said: “Those in the industry will find the calf building especially interesting as it is quite heavily insulated. We have taken a lot of expert advice and the technical specifications of the buildings are really interesting.

“Just like any other farms in the ‘real world’ ours has to show a profit - Bishop Burton is one of only a very small handful of college farms to be run on a commercial basis.

“With these new buildings the students not only get to see the very best practice, but they are taught that new investments need to show a profit.”

The new sheds have freed up space for the expansion of the college’s suckler herd; the foundation of which is its own dairy-bred Limousin cross heifers. Colin and his team have bought in some Hereford suckler heifers and already have a Limousin and a Hereford bull.

“I’ve been at the college for over 30 years and we’ve not had a suckler herd in all that time so it’s an exciting new venture for us,” explained Colin, who has also just taken delivery of 20 new insulated pig arcs.

“Like the investment in the dairy buildings these new pig arcs have very much been a commercial decision,” said Colin.

Jeanette Dawson OBE, principal and chief executive of Bishop Burton College, said: “There are only around three college farms in the whole country that are run as commercial concerns.

“The fact that every college farm decision is made with the bottom line in mind is something that makes me incredibly proud. We’re not only teaching best farming practice; but also commercial awareness of making the books balance.

“These two new buildings seem to symbolise very well that although the college has expanded and developed a great deal over recent years farming is still very much at its heart.”

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