Duchy announces awards for agricultural students

The Duchy of Lancaster has announced a new student award scheme as part of its wider commitment to securing the future of Britain’s farming industry.

Students taking degree courses in agriculture at Harper Adams University, Shropshire, or Myerscough College in Lancashire will soon be able to apply for financial support from the Duchy of Lancaster via an award fund paid direct to each institution.

The Duchy of Lancaster, which is custodian of more than 18,700 hectares of land across England and Wales, will offer students the opportunity to apply for up to £2,500 per annum to support their studies. It is hoped these awards will give students who may not have otherwise been able to do so the opportunity to study towards a career in the Agricultural sector, helping support the next generation of farmers.

Nathan Thompson, Chief Executive of the Duchy of Lancaster, said: “The awards have been set up as part of our commitment to and involvement with the farming industry. A central aim of the Duchy of Lancaster is to protect the future of our agricultural land holdings and one of the key ways we can do this is by supporting the next generation of farmers.

“Each award will provide £2,500 per annum per student, with the total annual Duchy of Lancaster commitment amounting to £10,000 per annum by academic year 2015/16.”

The awards are expected to be available at Harper Adams University from Autumn 2014 and Myerscough College from Autumn 2015, and will be administered by the university and the college.

Renée Gallina-Morris, representing the Harper Adams University Development Trust, said: “We are grateful to the Duchy of Lancaster for giving us this opportunity to add to our growing range of student awards and scholarships. We will invite students to apply in due course, and look forward to announcing our first Duchy of Lancaster Award winner in the 2014/15 academic year.”

Ann Turner, Principal & Chief Executive of Myerscough College, said: “We’re delighted that the Duchy of Lancaster recognise that Myerscough is a key provider of agricultural courses and this partnership is fantastic news for our potential students who may have found the cost of the course prohibitive.”

As well as the bursary scheme, the Duchy of Lancaster will continue to provide an annual fund of £2,500 to Myerscough College, to be distributed to students in need of additional financial support on reflection of their achievements. The Duchy of Lancaster will also continue to sponsor two attendees at the Oxford Farming conference every year.

Founded in the 13th century, the Duchy of Lancaster is a private portfolio of land, property and assets held for the Sovereign in Right of His or Her Duchy of Lancaster. Today the Duchy of Lancaster is custodian of 18,700 hectares across England and Wales, including key urban developments, historic buildings, high quality farm land and areas of great natural beauty.

Issued on behalf of Duchy of Lancaster by The BIG Partnership.

For further information, please contact:

Sharon Mars or Laura Berry

0151 600 5129

sharon.mars@bigpartnership.co.uk / laura.berry@bigpartnership.co.uk