instructions games slot machines-Green Man: New site will support farmers and young people, boss says

Green Man Festival stage with thousands of peopleImage source, Green Man
Image caption, The owner of Green Man festival will run the Welsh government-backed farm near Talybont-on-Usk in Powys

The boss of Green Man Festival has said she plans to help young people into farming amid criticism of a Welsh government-backed land purchase.

Gilestone Farm in Powys was bought by the Welsh government for £4.5m earlier this year, with Fiona Stewart's company paying commercial rent.

Ms Stewart said she would employ a local farmer to manage the land.

She said: "I want farmers farming Gilestone, and we are in the process of doing that."

Ms Stewart, who runs Green Man, she would have preferred to have had a loan to buy the farm, but the Welsh government preferred to own it and charge rent.

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She said the Green Man organisation had worked with the Welsh government helping to promote Wales and Welsh products for many years, and they had talked about how to "diversify the brand and create jobs".

When asked if she had approached the Welsh government for a loan to expand onto the farm rather than the government buy it, she said "they came to me," and she had not asked for financial help "because that was the model that I understood they wanted to give to me".

Image caption, The Welsh government and Ms Stewart have been looking for locations since 2019

The model is similar to one developed by the Welsh government to support independent TV producers, Bad Wolf.

Ms Stewart said the project, which saw Bad Wolf rent studios as tenants of the Welsh government, was "massively successful".

Image caption, Independent TV producers Bad Wolf took over the controversial Pinewood Studio Wales as tenants of the Welsh Government

Regarding Gilestone Farm, Ms Stewart added: "They [Welsh government] saw it as a new model because they retain the assets.

"I can see why it's commercially attractive to them [to own the farm themselves], because they get the uplift for everything, I'm creating this and it's my risk.

"Owning it would have been nice, I would have liked to have done that, and that certainly was my intention."

Image source, Getty Images
Image caption, Ms Stewart's company will pay a commercial rent to the Welsh government who bought the farm for £4.5m

She said that for her business, one of the attractions was that the farm was already used for tourism and events.

She said "it seemed logical to build on that", while retaining it as a working farm.

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