STOP & THINK - focus on farm safety in 2018

Date published: 06 February 2018

With the closed period for slurry spreading over, farm safety remains a top priority as new dates for farm safety workshops are being organised across Northern Ireland.

UFU deputy president Victor Chestnutt, Farm Family Key Skills Scheme Manager Siobhán Sheppard and CAFRE Director Martin McKendry.

Over the years the causes of injuries and fatalities on farm have largely remained the same and all too often these accidents are avoidable. 

These workshops target farmers, farm family members and farm workers to raise awareness, encouraging improvements and adoption of safer practices.  

Hosted on farm, the free workshops offer practical awareness covering the everyday hazards faced by the farming industry. 

At the recent Arable Conference at CAFRE, Victor Chestnutt deputy president of the Ulster Farmers’ Union recognised the importance of health and safety on the farm and encouraged farmers and the farm family members to attend the workshops. He said: “As with all farm safety advice, the best approach remains to stop and think SAFE, even with everyday tasks. Farm Family Key Skills workshops on Health and Safety training are vitally important to raise awareness within farming families. The UFU would encourage everyone to take the time to attend the free sessions that include looking at the dangers of slurry, working with animals, equipment and avoiding falls.”

Each workshop offers a mix of real life stories, up to date information and a practical understanding of on farm risks, how to identify them and how to manage them. Workshops also introduce farmers to the new construction requirements and raise awareness of the ‘Making it Safer’ tool, a key requirement for the new Farm Business Improvement Scheme (FBIS).

Workshop Dates

On-farm workshops are scheduled to take place on the following dates with each workshop commencing at 7pm:

  • Thursday 8 February, Omagh
  • Tuesday 20 February, Eglinton
  • Thursday 22 February, Tandragee
  • Tuesday 27 February, Roslea, Fermanagh
  • Wednesday 7 March, Ballymena
  • Wednesday 14 March, Hilltown, Newry
  • Wednesday 21 March, Donemana

After a successful Health & Safety workshop in Ballymena Livestock Market on Tuesday 23 January, Dungannon and Enniskillen Livestock Markets are also hoping to host these workshops in the near future so watch this space.

How to Register:  Registration in advance of each workshop is essential.  For further information or to register for a workshop, go online to the CAFRE website or alternatively contact Samantha or Joyce at RDC on 028 8676 6980.

Anyone who wishes to host a workshop in their community please also get in touch with RDC for assistance.   

Farm family Key Skills (FFKS) is part of the Farm Business Improvement Scheme which is funded under the Rural Development Programme 2014 – 2020 and is part funded by the European Union (EU).

Notes to editors: 

  1. The Northern Ireland Rural Development Council (RDC) has been appointed to deliver Health & Safety training as part of the Farm Family Key Skills programme.
  2. Farm Family Key Skills aims is to increase the levels of knowledge and skills in agricultural and commercial horticulture businesses.
  3. Managed by the College of Agriculture, Food and Rural Enterprise (CAFRE), the programme is funded through the Rural Development Programme (RDP) 2014-2020 with support from the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD).
  4. For more information, please contact RDC Tel: 028 8676 6980 Email:
  5. Follow DAERA on Twitter or on Facebook.
  6. All media enquiries to DAERA Press Office or tel: 028 9052 4619.


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