Comment: Active summer for young farmers

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A NETWORK of young farmers clubs provide industry insights and a social scene for young generations across the country, with children and young people aged between 10 and 26 making up their membership. Caroline Pritchard, county co-ordinator at the Yorkshire Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs tells of how it has been an active summer to date for the region’s clubs.

Selby Young Farmers Club loves a challenge and this year’s challenge was to celebrate the club’s 65th anniversary. So it seemed right to hold a Sizzling Show Day and Dance, an event which proved a real hit which drew visitors from far and wide.

A highlight was the display of vintage farm machinery, featuring combine harvesters through the decades. The comparison between the earliest machine and the latest high-tech monster, nicknamed The Combinator, summed up the advances in modern farming over quite a short period of time.

There were working horses on show with two beautiful ploughing horses giving sledge rides to visitors.

The day depended on the weather, which as all farmers know is a challenge in itself. When the mist and clouds lifted at 11am it was the icing on the cake and the afternoon was splendid. It was perfect for the main ring events, which included the Yorkshire Working Trials Society showcasing their working dogs, the Sherburn In Elmet Flyball group and the tug of war contest.

There was food to eat from local producers and a popular attraction was the pig butchering demonstration during which children made their own sausages, which could be bought and taken home for tea.

Selby Rock Choir provided a fabulous soundtrack in the barn which was the setting for the evening’s entertainment.

The children’s area was well-stocked all day, and the animals there to pet included a calf, pony and two very furry alpacas.

During the evening a live band, Styckleback, and a DJ made for a fabulous atmosphere. With more than 1,000 people attending the day and night do, the celebration can be remembered by all as a huge success. The club can be proud of all its achievements over the years and is looking forward to tackling the next challenge, and also the distribution of funds to well deserving charities, Yorkshire Air Ambulance and Yorkshire Cancer Research.

Elsewhere in the region, Winksley cum Grantley YFC successfully pushed a bath 60 miles from Ripon to Scarborough to raise money for Yorkshire Air Ambulance and Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research. A bath was made especially for the event in a steel frame with large castor wheels. With plans already in place for another fundraising event, who knows what will happen next.

The Yorkshire Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs hosts its seventh forum on November 20 at Ripon Land Rover, Hutton Bank, Ripon by permission of Ripon Farm Services, starting at 7.30pm. Visitors are welcome.

The topic up for discussion will be ‘Diversification and Tourism: How to make money in the Countryside?’

Anyone wishing to attend is asked to inform the county office by November 6 by calling 01423 865870 or by emailing office@yfyfc.org.uk