Duncan Glen has over thirty years’ experience in environmental land management for public and private sector clients and charitable organisations. He recently joined D&R from Strutt & Parker where he was Director of Environmental Land Management and will be based at the new Davidson & Robertson office in Northumberland.
Growing up near Berwick, Duncan has a practical farming background. An enthusiasm for the conservation movement was ignited at agricultural college in the late 1980’s where he discovered land can be managed profitably for clients in an environmentally enhanced way.
Commenting on his appointment Niall Milner, Director and Head of Property and Forestry said “For the last thirty years Duncan’s career has specialised in natural capital. He is passionate about making the most of environmental assets and will be using his strategic vision and years of practical experience to expand the land management services we offer.
“Duncan has the ability to translate policy into clear actions on the ground, and an eye on policy that can shape the future for our clients. We know clients will appreciate his approach which focuses on environmental land management that is both effective and sustainable. Duncan has a strong record for building and managing teams and joins us at a time when the rural landscape and land management is changing, and we are excited that he has decided to join our team.”
With the growing range of environmental opportunities including regenerative farming, peatland restoration, biodiversity offsetting carbon sequestration, and other emerging natural capital initiatives, it is an exciting time for Duncan to join the D&R team. Never before have there been so many competing pressures on land, and it is often a fine balance integrating these to achieve the best outcomes.
Commenting on his new role, Duncan said “It’s essential that our landscape is managed sustainably, for the benefit of the environment, and for the wider rural economy. Government policies and incentives are changing, but strategies are still hazy and there is a frustrating lack of detail upon which farmers and landowners can base their business decisions. There are new markets and opportunities to tap in to, but they are all at an early stage, so we are still learning a lot.
“We work across Scotland and Northern England, so this cross border job is interesting as the two countries are diverse in terms of land use strategies. Culturally and socially land means a lot more in Scotland than in England, but across Northern England and Southern Scotland, the culture and attitude to land management is similar – we just need to work with the differing government policies.
“As professional land advisors, it is our job to push government for clear guidance on policy on both sides of the border because at the moment, landowners are reluctant to commit because it is so new, and we need clearer guidance from our governing bodies. At the moment, emerging markets such as soil carbon credits are completely unregulated so private markets need to be approached cautiously.
“It is a great time to be able to develop our in-house skills, bringing our client facing teams up to speed with the right subject matter, enabling them to explore the new opportunities that are emerging for our clients. We are already supporting land managers who understand that land profitability and ecology can work in tandem and look forward to expanding this service to existing and new clients.”