Charles Holt has over 30 years of experience as a farm management consultant, mostly in the East Midlands area, although increasingly he works nation-wide. He specialises in providing financial and technical advice to farming and diversified rural businesses, and focuses particularly on strategic planning for business development or restructuring.
Working in difficult situations involving family disputes, partnership splits, banking crises and receiverships are an increasing part of Charles’ work. He can see ways through problems that cannot be seen by others, and can often mediate to help find solutions to apparently intractable problems.
Charles has a particular interest in planning matters as they apply to farmers. He is a specialist in advising on and preparing Agricultural Dwelling House Appraisals, acting both for farmers and for Planning Authorities, where a second opinion is required.
Charles also provides expert farm management consultancy advice in planning appeals. However, where possible Charles works alongside the local planning authority, as it is usually cheaper for the rural business client and achieves a quicker result, if both sides can agree on a planning solution to a problem.
Charles has also acted in a number of planning cases involving equine businesses, including racing, polo estates and livery yards.
In addition Charles operates a service called “Powerbuy”, whereby he helps source cheap electricity for all farmers and rural businesses. There is no charge for this service.
Charles operates the FCGSS Farm Accounts software package support line from his office.
- Strategic business planning and budgeting
- Farm business Options Reviews and restructuring
- Planning permissions for rural businesses
- Acting at Planning Appeals and hearings
- Farm management accounting
- Expert opinion
Member of the British Institute of Agricultural Consultants
1979 BSc (Hons) in Agricultural Economics, Reading University
1981 Diploma in Farm Management, Seale-Hayne College, Devon.
Examples of recent achievements
- Assisted in the rescue of a farming client from Court action by lender, with whom he had defaulted, and managed to get him re-banked with another of the “big four” banks.
- Acted successfully for a Local Planning Authority as an expert in a very contentious planning appeal, whereby the appellant wanted to erect a house on a one acre spurious “rural business”.
- Acted successfully for a client in a planning committee meeting in late 2015 to obtain planning permission for a temporary dwelling on a 3 hectare holding, despite planning officer recommendation for refusal.
- Successfully acted as a joint Court appointed farming expert in an agricultural divorce case.
- Advised a Local Planning Authority on a case involving a polo estate, where they agreed with the applicant’s proposal, but which had received vociferous local resident opposition.
- Devised and negotiated a contract between two dairy farmers to enable them to milk cows jointly on one holding.
- Assisted a client negotiate his way out of a Contract Farming Agreement that was working against his interests, and enabled him to get back into farming in his own right. In this case co-ordination of solicitors, bankers, a forensic accountant and the clients were all crucial to an agreed outcome at mediation.