Before using the link below to open an online application form you will need the name and email address of an existing Member who has agreed to support your application. You will also need bank or building society account details to set up a secure direct debit for the £72.50 annual subscription (£36.50 for Student Friend membership). If you have any queries on paying the subsciption, please get in touch with membership secretary Clive Rainbird, whose contact details are shown above.
Anyone who specialises in agriculture, horticulture or other rural industries and is involved in journalism, broadcasting, publishing or commercial photography or press and public relations, qualifies to become a Member of the Guild, including overseas residents whose work is published or broadcast in Great Britain.
The Guild is a community of professionals with regular networking and training opportunities both in Britain and overseas. It is also a source of news about members' professional activities, and represents their interests through other organisations in the rural sector.
The following video, compiled by Ian Damms of Breeze & Freeze at the 2011 annual Harvest Lunch held at Stationers' Hall in London, gives a flavour of what attracts people to the Guild.
"The Guild plays an important role in building a sense of community amongst those working in food and farming communications. We face big challenges, but the Guild can help us be more effective at getting our messages across. My colleagues appreciate that they have a representative body working on their behalf on themes that we all care about." - Jane King, CEO, AHDB and former Editor, Farmers Weekly
"In my previous role as a journalist and my current one as a supply chain consultant, the contacts, support, guidance and friendship that the Guild and its members have provided have always been invaluable." - Cedric Porter, director, Supply Intelligence Ltd
"I have always wanted our industry to be better understood through more effective communications. Through my membership of the Guild I have met and become friends with the like-minded people who can make that happen!" - Rosie Carne, Marketing Manager, Yara UK
All members of the Guild are affiliated to the International Federation of Agricultural Journalists (IFAJ), a collective of similar Guilds, associations and press clubs around the world, and to the European Network of Agricultural Journalists (ENAJ). Both provide networking and professional development opportunities, and journalism and PR contacts. The IFAJ Press card (available to Members from the Guild secretary) is recognised at many overseas events. Visit the International section of this website for more details.
The benefits of being a Member of the Guild include:
Social and business events throughout the year, providing opportunities for networking with other members and GB agricultural industry representatives.
Associate membership of the International Federation of Agricultural Journalists (IFAJ) and European Network of Agricultural Journalists (ENAJ), giving access to contacts around the world, the opportunity to participate in overseas events, including the IFAJ annual congress, and an internationally-recognised IFAJ Press card.
Access to an accredited UK Press Card via the Newspaper Society for those that qualify.
A personal copy of the Guild Year Book – an invaluable reference of members professonal interests and services with contact details.
Monthly eAlerts and a regularly updated website carrying news and information about Guild events, awards, training initiatives and its members, and the publications, agencies and companies for which they work.
Notification of job vacancies, positions wanted and invitations to tender for work.
The chance to win one of several prestigious Guild and International journalism, broadcasting and photography awards with generous cash prizes, plus travel Scholarships.
Support from the Guild’s Charitable Trust in the event of financial difficulties through ill-health or loss of work.
People who qualify as a Member regularly engage in journalism or press and public relations in the rural sector in Great Britain, including those based overseas. They are likely to work for a publisher or an agency, as a freelance journalist, photographer or PR professional, or operate in a communications role within a manufacturing, service or supply organisation.
Those who do not qualify on this basis but who wish to support or maintain contacts with Members can become a Friend of the Guild. They enjoy much the same benefits but do not have a vote and are ineligible to enter awards.
Students studying a relevant course can become a Friend for a nominal fee - contact the membership secretary for details.
There is also a Retired category for past members who are no longer actively engaged in journalism or press and public relations but who wish to remain in touch with friends and colleagues. Members who successfully apply to the secretary for Retired status pay a reduced annual subscription but forfeit voting rights and do not qualify to enter Guild awards.
Because the Guild is on HM Revenues & Customs list of professional organisations, the subscription is tax deductable if paid personally and can be entered as such on an income tax return.
Download a 'benefits of membership' document here.