Eastbourne farmer to step down after 31 years

Ali and Will Higgs at the farm SUS-180822-100202001
Ali and Will Higgs at the farm SUS-180822-100202001

Eastbourne farmer Will Higgs has called time on 31 years of farming on Black Robin Farm.

Since 1987, and through the best and worst of weathers, Will has tended sheep, cattle and crops, along with managing holiday accommodation on the Beachy Head farm.

He said, “My wife Ali and I simply decided the 6am starts in the depths of winter and the frequent late night finishes are getting a bit much for us and it’s time to let the next generation take the farm on.

“Black Robin will always have a very special place in our hearts and we’re happy that it will continue to be farmed in the same way.”

The farm boasts around 1,000 acres, making it one of the largest tenanted farms in the south east.

Strutt & Parker will be managing the process of re-letting the farm on behalf of Eastbourne Borough Council.

Isabel Swift of Strutt & Parker said, ”We are delighted to be involved in the letting of Black Robin Farm on behalf of the council. It is a fantastic farm and the letting presents a real opportunity for the successful applicant.

“We have received instructions from the council that applications will be assessed against various criteria, the uppermost of these being a commitment to conservation and public engagement, hopefully through educational initiatives. The council is also keen to hear from young farmers as they are aware of the barriers which can be experienced by new entrants into farming.

“As well as the farmland itself, accommodation is available by negotiation. Tender packs will be available and we will be holding viewing days by prior appointment. For more information please refer to the advertisements placed in South East Farmer and Farmers Weekly magazines.”

Will said, “We will miss the many people we welcomed to the farm, especially those who enjoyed coming back year after year for their summer holidays. When Airbourne is on it really is the best seat in the house.”