Spring Newsletter


Tackling rural crime with Avon and Somerset Police

Cornish Mutual is working in partnership with Avon and Somerset Police to reduce crime in rural communities. We have supported the printing of new materials, such as banners and postcards, to promote the Farm Watch scheme.

The banners are now being displayed in key locations across the county, including livestock markets, major travel routes and at Somerset Young Farmers headquarters.

Farm Watch was established in 2008 and gives the police the ability to send live updates, alerting Farm Watch members to thefts or suspicious activity in the area, as well as providing crime prevention tips. Police hope the extra funding provided by Cornish Mutual will boost membership by promoting the value of this free service.

Sergeant Andy Murphy said: “The public play a vital role in our fight against crime. Information received from the public could be the missing piece of a puzzle or breakthrough in a case, helping us to reunite owners with their stolen goods, catch offenders and reduce the number of people becoming victims of crime.”

Philip Wilson of Cornish Mutual said: “As a mutual organisation we put our Members’ needs at the heart of everything we do. Sadly, rural crime is a fact of life but Farm Watch has been proven to make a difference and we are delighted to be working with Avon and Somerset Police.”

Will you share your favourite family recipe?

Our Real Food Heroes campaign is a golden opportunity for us to share our Members’ passion for their produce with the world. It celebrates many of the South West’s farmers and rural businesses who are doing their bit to champion the region’s produce.

Here at Cornish Mutual we want more people to buy more of the fantastic local food and drink that is produced by our Members. That is why we are asking you to come forward with your favourite recipes involving some of the foods featured in our Real Food Heroes campaign so far.

Do you have the perfect potato dish? A gorgeous goat’s cheese recipe? A tasty turkey meal that your family enjoys? Or perhaps an awesome asparagus appetiser? If so, please visit our website www.cornishmutual.co.uk/real-food-heroes/recipe-submission-form to submit your recipe using the form under the Real Food Heroes tab. We will then choose our favourite recipes to be featured in a series of recipe cards. Those people whose recipes have been selected will receive a £50 gift voucher for the local farmshop of their choice. To take part, please send your potato, turkey, asparagus or goat’s cheese recipe to us by Friday 7 June 2019.

Expanding our Somerset Field Force team

We have welcomed three new recruits to help us meet growing demand from our membership in Somerset. Leanne Pitman, Will Weatherill and Jack Webster are the newest members of our Field Force team – the ‘boots on the ground’, who visit farms and rural businesses to offer insurance advice.

A former Young Farmer, Leanne spent a lot of her childhood on her grandparents’ farm and joins from a medical insurance company. With a background in business development roles, Will is also from a farming family and is still very active on his parents’ farm. Jack joins from another insurance role and will be focusing on our Members in North Somerset, where he grew up and now lives with his young family.

Business Development Leader Philip Wilson said: “As a mutual organisation, it is really important that we have a strong Field Force team, to meet our Members’ needs. With growing numbers of Somerset’s farms and rural businesses choosing Cornish Mutual for their insurance, it is important that we continue to grow and develop.

“Leanne, Will and Jack are welcome additions to our Somerset team, allowing Cornish Mutual to build a strong network of locally-based advisors to support our Members in their own environments.”

Farm vehicles at carnivals and fairs Safety considerations for farmers

What do farmers need to consider if they are taking farm vehicles to carnivals, fairs and fetes? Field Force Member Paula Mayes explains.

The days are getting longer with the summer months just around the corner. We know that many of our Members get involved in carnivals and summer fairs, with farm vehicles often being used to tow floats. This is the perfect time to make sure you understand your safety and insurance responsibilities.

We ask Cornish Mutual Members to carry out a safety checklist on any vehicles being used at public events. This includes ensuring the vehicle is mechanically sound and serviced. For trailers, it’s important to have someone supervising the tow bar to ensure no one crosses or rides on it. A secondary safety device, such as a strong chain, should also be fitted.

If a farm vehicle is being used as a float, everything being carried must be secure. Heavy items should be bolted down and barriers should also be fitted to keep any passengers safe and to avoid items falling from the float.
Most Cornish Mutual Members are insured as farm businesses with Public Liability cover included as standard.  Your insurance may not cover you for towing a tractor at an event. If in doubt, speak to us and we can explain the insurance implications and extend cover for you.

These events are generally a positive experience for everyone involved. Spending time talking to us and following the correct safety advice means you can relax and just enjoy the event.

Helping Truro Cathedral display sculpture by local artist

Cornish Mutual has sponsored the installation of the Finn Cross, a sculpture by local artist the late Michael Finn, which is now on permanent display at Truro Cathedral. Our support included funding the design and lighting of the space in which the bronze sculpture is displayed.

The installation of the Finn Cross is the culmination of a seven-year fundraising campaign and support from the local community. Students at Falmouth University designed and constructed the glass plinth on which the 18-inch cross sits.

Cornish Mutual Managing Director Alan Goddard said: “The Finn Cross is a stunning piece of work that embodies the cathedral’s strong links with the local area. I have no doubt that it will provide a space for local people and visitors to reflect.”

The Dean of Truro, the Very Reverend Roger Bush, said: “We are elated to house this important piece of art here at Truro Cathedral and we are incredibly grateful to the many people whose hard work and support have made it possible.

“We extend our sincere thanks to Cornish Mutual for their fantastic support and commitment to ensuring the cross is displayed in the most beautiful, fitting and arresting way.”

Meet our Members: Feed the Soul

Through our Real Food Heroes campaign, we are celebrating the people behind the South West’s produce. Cornish Mutual has a very diverse range of food-related businesses among its Members and a great example is Dorset health food shop and café, Feed the Soul.

Situated about five miles from Dorchester, Feed the Soul was set up by brother and sister Nick and Alex Beer in 2017. Alongside the café area, the shop stocks fruit, vegetables and eggs from local suppliers as well as health food products.

Alex said: “It’s nice to see so many people passionate about what we do. All our food is organic and plant based. We use the most natural and purest ingredients in everything and we make it all from scratch. We put a lot of time, effort and love into everything we make, which I think does show.” Nick added: “Lots of our customers like their traditional meat and veg and love cheeses and breads which is great because we’ve got lots on offer in the shop. If anyone comes into the café to try our food, we like to think it’s tasty for everyone.”

The pair say that family support has been crucial to them in setting up their first business at such a young age. They have also benefited from ongoing advice from Cornish Mutual, who have insured Feed the Soul from the start.

Alex said: “The whole experience of dealing with Cornish Mutual has been really easy. They made the process really straightforward and were very clear about what insurance we needed. They’re very supportive of small, independent businesses, so we feel like we’re getting that one-to-one attention. I also really like the fact they’re a mutual, so we’re not dealing with a huge corporation.”

Cornish Mutual Field Force Member Nick Bunting says: “Alex and Nick are genuinely so passionate about what they do. They have ambitions to grow, but for all the right reasons; because they really believe in everything they produce. They deserve every success.”

Driving your Car in Europe after Brexit

If you are due to be driving in Europe after Brexit, we strongly recommend that you investigate the current situation at the time and what documents you may need to ensure you are fully compliant with European requirements.

This may include an International Motor Insurance Card document (Green Card), in which case please contact us at least 10 days before leaving the UK should you require one of these.

Enhanced services for our Members

Our Motor breakdown service, which is provided by ARAG in conjunction with Call Assist, can now provide cover for livestock trailers if you break down or if the trailer itself breaks down. This service is still available to our Members for only £22 a year plus IPT.

We have also extended the free counselling service available through ARAG with a company called Insight Talking Therapy to all our products. Members can call the help line on 01872 270 154 any time to receive confidential help or advice.