Tom Pinckney, of Northburn Station, near Cromwell, has raised his hand for election to the QEII Trust board of directors.

''I bring the farmer's view point to the table,'' Mr Pinckney said.

''I have a firm view that the farmer have a vested interest in the preservation of the land and the protection of his property so he can feed his family for generations to come.

''If he fails to protect the lands, he is the one who suffers.


''He and his family have the most to gain if they protect it and most to lose if they don't.''
The trust has two vacancies on its board of directors, and 11 trust members, including Mr Pinckney, have been nominated for the positions.

Voting is now open and members have until March 11 at noon to vote.

Originally from Southland, the Pinckney family bought the 13,500ha Northburn Station in 1993.

They now run 10,000 merino and beef stock units.

They also planted a vineyard, which they later sold to Cloudy Bay in 2014.

Other land has been sold for vineyard development.

Mr Pinckney has a QEII covenant, covering multiple historic sites on the station.

''We have 12 quarter-acre plots of land, known as the Cockayne plots,'' he said.

They were established in 1920 by botanist Dr Leonard Cockayne, who carried out research into the regeneration of grasses and other vegetation on the dry and semi-arid land at the station.

The land had been totally denuded by rabbits and he wanted to determine the various herbage species that could be re-established if the sites were not grazed.

The plots have been fenced off from rabbits and stock, and the flora and fauna has been encouraged to re-establish.

''It is really more historical protection,'' Mr Pinckney said.

''Dr Cockayne planted exotic pines and other species to see what would happen.

''He wanted to prove that the land would revegetate, that the country would bounce back, and it now has.''

Mr Pinckney won the Ballance Farm Environment Awards' Farm Stewardship award in 2013.

He has held governance roles with the family company, is a school board trustee, and he is the deputy chairman of the Otago Rural Support Trust.

He said he had always been interested in the work of the QEII Trust.

''I have a lot of respect for what the Trust does.

''I feel the QEII Trust is a really good model for the protection and conservation of sensitive land in New Zealand.''

He supported the Trust's work and he wanted to continue to do so through a governance role.

Mr Pinckney said key conservation issues for Central Otago included invasive woody weeds, as well as rabbits and wallabies, and he supported the use of technology to deal with them.

That included thermal imaging for pest control.

Southern Rural Life