ORGANISERS are vowing to go ahead with an annual awards ceremony which seeks to honour rural success stories.

The awards were due to have been presented at this year's New Forest and Hampshire County Show, which has been cancelled because of the Covid-19 crisis.

The Country Land and Business Association (CLA) says the ceremony will still take place later this year, although a venue has yet to be confirmed.

The 2020 categories include young environmentalist, best supporter of local produce and young farmer/commoner of the year.

Daily Echo:

Businesses, individuals and organisations can nominate themselves or be nominated by others but must live or work within the area covered by the New Forest Marque scheme.

The CLA represents farmers, landowners and rural businesses across the region.

Regional Director Michael Valenzia said: "We are incredibly proud to be part of these awards, which are now in their eighth year and really going from strength to strength.

“Farmers, commoners and other rural businesses play a hugely important role in managing the landscape and helping our communities prosper in the New Forest and across Hampshire.

“We’re delighted that the awards are returning this year to honour even more rural success stories, and we look forward to crowning the winners later this year.”

One of the other organisations involved in the annual awards scheme is the New Forest National Park Authority.

Daily Echo:

The chief executive, Alison Barnes, said: “It’s a real pleasure to be teaming up with the CLA again to reward local people who are helping to safeguard our national park.

“A living, working forest relies on great partnerships, particularly in the face of the climate and nature emergencies.

"Our awards recognise those who are ensuring the Forest continues to thrive and is fit for the future, through their work in areas such as land management, commoning, rural diversification or supporting local produce.

“We look forward to receiving nominations for people whose dedication to a sustainable Forest really shines through. It’s wonderful to show our appreciation of them through these awards.”

Application forms are available online at