Beth Duchesne .
I am a farmer’s daughter and was brought up living and working on our family arable farm and contracting business based near Bury St Edmunds in Suffolk. Although I have not been on the farms pay roll since I started my professional career, I am still involved with the business and help out where I can, especially on the grain cart at harvest or with our Christmas Farm Shop.
I graduated Harper Adams University in 2014 after studying BSc (Hons) Agriculture with Farm Business Management after spending my placement year as a trials assistant for Syngenta. Once I graduated, I started my professional career as a consultant in 2014 at Bidwells in Cambridge as an Agricultural Consultant and worked for there for 7 years until I joined Brooks Leney 12 months ago, to expand their existing service lines to include farm management and consultancy based in their new office in Bury St Edmunds.
Brooks Leney is an independent firm of Chartered Surveyors, Land, Farm, Property and Planning consultants based in East Anglia. I provide professional advice and support on a range of agricultural matters for our land owning and farmer clients based in East Anglia. My role as a Farm Business management and consultancy adviser includes whole farm business appraisals, advice on farming structures, diversification projects as well as managing a number of contract farming and share farming agreements. I also provide farm budgeting and financial advice to clients, including cashflow forecasting, completion of management accounts, financial performance reporting and benchmarking as well as designing, completing applications and agreement support for subsidy and grant schemes. I am BASIS and BETA Conservation Management qualified, with the aim to utilise both my practical and professional experience so far, to provide advice and guidance to my clients.
How will Institute membership help you in your current role?
With the industry going through the biggest change that we have seen for decades, the need for sound, well thought through advice is growing, and I want to maintain a high level of knowledge, skills and professionalism across all areas of the sector.
Being a member of the institute will help me achieve this, through the opportunities to meet and discuss challenges and opportunities with likeminded people from all backgrounds and experiences, something which will be invaluable to me in my career as an adviser.
Being a member of the institute is an industry wide recognition of my career so far and I hope this, plus the networking opportunities it brings, will help expand my network of professional contacts and build my reputation within the industry.
Where do you see yourself in 5/10 years’ time?
I hope that in 10 years time I can look back on my achievements, which will include having played my part in ensuring the continued resilience and sustainability of the industry as we progress through this period of change. My aim is to have grown my reputation as a While a trusted adviser at Brooks Leney, having grown our farm management and consultancy services within our team, bringing on new team members to help us to continue growing and supporting our clients across the sector.
How will membership help you reach this goal? What is the biggest benefit to you of membership?
The requirement for CPD will encourage me to keep developing my skills, both technically and personally, whilst challenging me to keep me on track to meet my personal and professional goals and continue to grow as an advisor and develop my career.
How regularly do you hope to attend regional/national events?
I will be attending the National Farm Management Conference in November, my first time as a Professional Member of the Institute. I have attended previously as a guest, but this will be my first time as a member.
I am also planning on attending the Mid-Anglian branch meetings once they start, as this will be a great way to meet other members in the area and continue to develop my knowledge across the sector.