The Trust

The John Edgar Trust has, since its foundation in 1970, aimed to enhance leadership and management skills within agriculture and the land-based industries, following the inspiration of the late John Edgar. It is a Hampshire-based Registered Charity dedicated to helping people to achieve their potential in rural enterprises.

To this end, the Trust offers, through its Management Development Scheme, a unique Management Training opportunity to people engaged in farming and land-based industries in southern England.

At an Alumni Reunion

At an Alumni Reunion

The Trust finances and organises a biennial residential course covering all aspects of rural business management. For each course, applications for an Award are invited from people who are already established in their rural business careers, and normally twelve people are selected. Successful applicants are asked to support the work of the Trust in the future. The Trust gratefully acknowledges ongoing practical support received from numerous individuals, institutions and commercial organisations.

The course consists of a five-day November module at the Royal Agricultural College, Cirencester, followed by two four-day case-study based modules in Hampshire in the following January and March.  The lead tutor for the Course is Professor John Alliston and he is assisted by colleagues from the RAC Cirencester and other lecturers drawn from other educational establishments and the professions.

Over the past four decades almost 300 people have benefited from the Management Development Scheme, and they and other “Friends of John Edgar” are invited to attend a biennial conference, and other events and Courses organised by the Trust. The Trustees are proud of the achievements of the Trust over forty years, and believe that the organisation has moved to reflect the significant changes that have occurred within the rural sector over this period. Its scope has widened from purely agricultural businesses to encompass all aspects of land-based enterprise, and the wide range of experience of more recent Award applicants is evidence of this.

The greater demands placed on rural businesses in the 21st century, and the ever-increasing professionalism of the people involved results in greater demands on the resources of the Trust. Thanks to the success of the initial appeal and subsequent donations, the Trust has so far been able to finance its chosen activities but to meet the challenges of the future more money will be required. There is an on-going fund raising programme and ex-Award Holders in particular are encouraged to contribute by covenant. In recent years the Trust has benefited from grant funding from regional and educational sources. However this is no longer available, and participants in the 2018/19 Course will be asked to make a financial contribution towards their training, but bursaries will be available for those unable to meet this charge.

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