A YOUNG man is making his way as an agricultural entrepreneur after nurturing links with New Zealand.

Richard Hawlor, of Barnard Castle, County Durham, is finding his niche in the business world thanks to a formula from his grandfather and the help of the Prince's Trust.

Richard, 20, had been discharged from the Army on medical grounds when his grandfather, Wilf Tucker, of Burnopfield, gave him the patent for an agricultural gel and suggested he try building a business around it.

Nutrigel is a smart plant feed system which is made from recycled disposable nappies.

Richard found an ideal natural fertiliser to use in conjunction with the gel in a product called Agrisol, which is manufactured in New Zealand.

Richard, whose firm is called Creative Manufacturing Solutions, said: "Nutrigel is a super absorbent material and also releases water. If it is hydrated with liquid fertiliser, it gives plants all the nutrients they need.

"I have used it in hanging baskets in my garden, for example, and they hang for months on end without the need for watering."