THIS year’s South West Farmer Award's Young Farmer of the Year (sponsored by Coodes Solicitors) is Tom Stinton of Cools Farm, Wiltshire.

Tom, 23, runs Cools Farm Organics and is in a sharefarming arrangement.

Upon receiving the award, Tom said: “It was such a pleasant surprise to have been awarded young farmer of the year, I am very grateful for all the help and support I have been given to aid me to reach my goals of farming myself.

“There was certainly some good competition and it was a great evening with some great company too.”

As a first generation farmer, Tom ran a flock of sheep prior to getting the farm in 2021, and decided he wanted to take his farming career forward.

Tom and his partner Emily share the farm with Maggie and Quentin Edwards. They have 180 acres of organic grassland, with 30 acres of woodland, as well as 120 acres of rented organic pasture and 280 acres of downland at Lower Pertwood Organic Farm.

Tom sells organic and regenerative beef and lamb directly from the farm gate and at town markets and village/farm shops. They sell 12 steers and 70 lambs per year from the farm gate, with additional finish stock bring sold in other outlets.

Tom now runs a handsoff flock of 250 ewes and they have more than 200 cattle throughout the farms. The team farm extensively to allow pastures and soil health to regenerate. He is also in the process of establishing a self serve farm shop directly on the farm gate so customers can come and go as they please.