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Breakfast and health checks for agricultural sector workers at Melton Livestock Market

Sheep At The Cattle Market LRSN, MBC And UKSPF Logos

Melton Borough Council is encouraging those who work in the agriculture sector to attend a free breakfast at Melton Cattle Market, to find out about the health screening offer that has been allowed to continue thanks to the UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF). 

The agricultural sector is a key contributor to the local economy, which provides a vast and diverse range of jobs and is an integral component of the borough's heritage and history. Melton Borough Council, with its partners have committed to support this vital part of the economy by recognising the mental and physical health challenges of the agricultural industry.  

Individuals in the agricultural sector are at an elevated risk of developing physical and mental health issues. Unfortunately, due to numerous factors, such as proximity to services, it is also more difficult for them seek the necessary support to safeguard their well-being. As part of their commitment to support this sector, Melton Borough Council has decided to fund the continuation of a highly successful programme, delivered by LRSN, that makes physical and mental health checks easily accessible to workers within this sector with a contribution of over £30k through its UK Shared Prosperity Fund programme. 

LRSN previously self-funded the initial 6-month pilot alongside the Farmers Community Network (FCN), providing a walk-in service at the cattle market. Since April 2023, the pilot has facilitated 364 health checks and 41 referrals into the NHS for further treatment. 

LRSN has a long-established farmer health screening service, delivered by Registered Nurses offering confidential screening and advice across a range of medical issues. LRSN nurses offer routine health checks including blood pressure, blood sugar and cholesterol testing, as well as general wellbeing support and advice across a wide range of health concerns. In addition to their health screening services, LRSN has a holistic approach to wellbeing that includes an online health and wellbeing clinic called 'Click, Book, Chat'. This online Health Hub offers a suite of self-help literature, which is free to download, and serves as a referral point for their casework and mental health support. 

As a local authority, the council is committed to protecting the rural economy and supporting those working within it, so that the countryside can support living, working, sustainable communities. The health screening clinics and regular presence at markets is often a more approachable ‘front door’ access to their more specialised 1:1 support work particularly for those seeking mental health or business support. In the case of Melton, the business support element is being delivered in partnership with FCN. You can find details as to when the next session is being held at Melton Livestock Market in the calendar on their website: www.LRSN.co.uk 

Head of Charity at LRSN, Amy Thomas stated that “LRSN are proud to be working in partnership with Melton Borough Council and Farming Community Network to offer free heath checks to farmers at Melton Livestock Market. We recognise that the routes through which farmers might seek help are varied and very often indirect, and that many find that it can be difficult to take the time to look after their own health. LRSN have found that having a regular nursing presence at local markets is an important way to engage the farming community in prioritising their own health and wellbeing and we are delighted to have been able to establish the new Melton Livestock Market clinic – so please encourage everyone you know to pop in to see our nurses, you don’t need to make an appointment or even take off your boots, and you will always be welcomed by a friendly face.” 

The Leader of the Council and Portfolio Holder for Key Project Delivery, which includes the UKSPF, Cllr Pip Allnatt echoed the value of LRSN's services, stating that “The service that the LRSN provides is invaluable, and this is a positive step towards promoting the health and well-being of the rural farming community, which is an essential aspect of the borough's community and economy. With a deep understanding of the unique challenges and pressures faced by farmers, LRSN provides vital support and assistance to those who may be struggling with their mental health or in need of practical advice.” 

To celebrate the service, and to mark 25 years of LRSN, they are hosting a breakfast event on 24th January 2024 from 9am onwards, which the community are invited to attend and find out how these services can be accessed and celebrate their anniversary with a free all-day breakfast bap and a hot drink. There is no need to book a place, you can just turn up to Melton Livestock Market. 

Farmers wishing to access business support and information about grants and other business information, can contact business@melton.gov.uk to sign up for regular updates via the Business Bulletin. 

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Notes to editors: 

The UK Shared Prosperity Fund is a central pillar of the UK government’s Levelling Up agenda and provides £2.6 billion of funding for local investment by March 2025. The Fund aims to improve pride in place and increase life chances across the UK investing in communities and place, supporting local business and people and skills. 

For more information visit- www.gov.uk/government/publications/uk-shared-prosperity-fund-prospectus Powered by Levelling Up, Funded by UK Government

16 January 2024