I know this is a cliché but how fast has this year gone? With barely two weeks to go until Christmas I am not sure where this year has gone and being the ultimate Christmas Eve shopper and Christmas decorator, this year will be no different. I think this year has flown by even faster than usual because there have been so many changes and events which have meant there has been little time to have pause for thought. The business has multiplied in size since this time last year and as Mari reminded me recently, we were only three at last year's Christmas party, this year we were 8 but should have been 10 if it were not for illness. We all have individual and important roles to play within the business and I must take this opportunity to thank each member of the team for their valued contributions and hard work in 2012, our dramatic growth would have been impossible without them and I look forward to their continued support in 2013. It is therefore with sadness that I must report that Meinir Davies, who joined us in March 2012, is moving on to pastures new in the New Year. We will all miss her at Agri Advisor Solicitors and wish her well in her new adventure.
The barns will be finished in January (I am crossing my fingers as I write this) and I must thank Randell & Janes and all the contractors that have been working on site for the last 6 months and for making sure that the work progresses towards the deadline.
We had an excellent turn out for our Succession and Exit Planning event at Pontargothi Hall on Friday 7th December 2012 in
conjunction with LHP Chartered Accountants and Sian Bushell, Succession Planning Facilitator. If you need assistance with succession planning please do not hesitate to contact us.
I gave a presentation at a CAP Reform Conference held in London on 6th December 2012 which discussed the main points of the reforms currently on the table. Gwilym Jones spoke on behalf of the Commission and several MEPs were also present to give their views. One thing is now fairly certain, the reforms for Pillar 1 will not be implemented by 1 January 2014, that is now even being admitted by the Commission as an impossibility. Having said that there is reluctance to delay things further than that and therefore there is considerable pressure on all three European institutions to come to an agreement sooner rather than later. The same day I also attended the ADR Mediation Conference in Oxford, and it made me think that perhaps we could do with sending a couple of mediators to Brussels to resolve the differences between officers of the various EU institutions! At the mediation conference, it was emphasised that there would be dramatic changes to costs recovery and use of mediation further to the Jackson review and that these were due to commence in April 2013. This will mean that it will be more difficult to recover costs from the other side if you have not used mediation but also will mean costs are not normally awarded if the value of the case is low. This is designed to encourage people to settle disputes as opposed to litigate them. It will be interesting to see if this works in practice.
May I take this opportunity to wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.