Farmers are less represented in the Oireachtas than they once were, but Ian Marshall hopes to redress the balance.

The former Ulster Farmers Union president is contesting the seat on the Seanad’s Agricultural Panel vacated by Michael D’Arcy.

In 2018, Marshall became the first unionist in the Seanad since the 1930s, winning a similar by-election.

That time he was nominated by Fine Gael. It has proposed Limerick’s Maria Byrne this time.

Ian Marshall is being supported by Sinn Féin, for while he may be a unionist, he was opposed to Brexit, and wants close co-operation on this island, particularly for food and agriculture. A ray of light in a dark week for north-south relations on our little island.