Brian Bowen

I was brought up at Penwenallt Farm, Cwmcou, Newcastle Emlyn in a Welsh speaking community. I have two children, Karl and Kelly Ann, and can speak Welsh. I now farm at Pencoedcae Farm, Princetown, near Tredegar.

The farm is a mixed Suckler cow and Sheep hill unit. It consists of 150 acres of owned land with a further 1000, rented, acres and 1200 acres of common rights on three separate commons. I run the farm, along with my father, mother and my son.

I was an active member of the YFC since the age of 15. Through the YFC I had the opportunity to travel to New Zealand and the Far East, studying the scale and variety of farming in these countries.

On returning to Wales, I ran a Powys County Council smallholding in Old Radnor, before travelling to Saudi Arabia to manage a 40,000 head sheep unit on a two year contract.

Once the two years were finished the opportunity arose to take on neighbouring land to the family farm, allowing the business to expand and allow me to join the family business with my father and mother. In 2011 more land became available, allowing my son, Karl, to come home and become the third generation to farm at Pencoedcae.

I became Brecon Sub-Branch chairman in 2008 and have now served four terms in that role.

I became Brecon and Radnor County Chairman in 2010.

I have been the Brecon & Radnor delegate on the Livestock, Wool & Marts Committee since 2009. I am currently Vice Chairman.

I am Chairman of Llangynider Common Association and also chair of the Glastir Committee for the same. I am an executive member of two other commons associations (Buckland Manor Common and Gelligaer & Merthyr Common) as well as being a director on the board of the Hay & Brecon Farmers Co-Op.

Over the past five or more years I have made a particular effort to attend as many meetings, conferences and open days where I have made the point of talking to ministers, politicians and civil servants to ensure they are aware of the problems affecting the industry and how proposed policies will affect family farms such as my own.

I am very interested in continuing to represent farmers in discussions concerning the future of the CAP post 2013 and have taken part in meetings with MPs, AMs, and MEPs to put across their views.

I was very pleased that Brecon & Radnor proposed me as a candidate for the election to the Central F&O Committee as I believe that it is up to my generation to ensure that family farming in Wales continues and is attractive to the younger generation, such as my son. I would like to get to a position where I can represent the wider interests of the industry and would welcome the opportunity to put these views to the policy makers and politicians at a National level.

I would be very pleased to be able to play a greater role in supporting the FUW in maintaining and enhancing the strength of the organisation to be able to represent its members as effectively as possible, particularly in light of the serious challenges that now face the industry.