National Federation of Young Farmers' Clubs

Fun, Learning, and Achievement

16 April 2013

 

Young Farmers from across the south west attended the first road safety course as part of the NFYFC's Drive it Home campaign at Adam Henson’s Cotswold Farm Park in April.

The 2young2die session run by road safety charity Brake and funded by NFU Mutual and the Rural Youth Trust was the first of seven courses to be taught across the Federation’s locations. The course attracted young farmers from Gloucestershire, Berkshire, Oxfordshire, Somerset, Dorset, Northamptonshire, Herefordshire, Exeter and Cornwall.

The session gave members practical advice and resources to be able to run road safety sessions in their own clubs. The 14 participants have now become the first set of Drive it Home champions and the Federation hopes to build a network of at least 48 of them across counties throughout England and Wales who can help to spread road safety messages.

Television presenter and Director of the Cotswold Farm Park Adam Henson greeted young farmers on the course. He told everyone it was appropriate that his farm was the launch location due to a recent tragic road incident involving a member of staff.

Adam Henson said:

“I am pleased that we were the launch pad for the first Young Farmers’ national road safety course as a young member of our staff was tragically killed in a car crash just before Christmas on a local rural road. When I was a young farmer years ago at agricultural college, a poignant moment for me was when the Principal came into our lecture theatre and told the 80 of us on the course that 5% of us would be dead by the end of our three years, partly due to car crashes. He was right – three people died on my course.

“When you’re young, life is just so exciting that you can feel like you’re indestructible. It’s such a tragic loss of life when people are so young and have everything ahead of them. So it’s brilliant that the NFYFC is running these courses and I hope that after the session at my Farm the first set of champions can now start spreading the word amongst their friends.”

Members on the course were also treated to lunch and invited to tour the farm park after the session. 

Ben Cavill,19, from Falmouth YFC in Cornwall, travelled up to the course and said:

“A member of our club was involved in a car accident this month and has only just come out of a coma. She’s the same age as me and it really hits home when you know who it is. You always discuss the subject as if it’s nothing to do with you. When an accident like this happens you realise something has to be done as it could be anyone. I know members who don’t pay as much attention as they could when driving. I came on the course so I could take the message back to them that it is dangerous.”

Sam Allen, 25, from Bicester Seniors, Oxfordshire Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs, said:
“Everyone in Young Farmers knows someone who has been involved in a collision or been hurt through driving. I think by coming on the course it gives me the opportunity to educate other road users the same age as myself. We learnt that driving when tired can be as bad as drink driving. I can go back to my county now and give a presentation to each club. Even if it only gets through to two people it will be worth it.”   

The majority of NFYFC’s 25,000 members live and work in rural communities putting them in a high risk category for incidents on rural roads. Statistics by Road Safety Analysis show that rural young drivers nationally are 37% more likely to have an injury collision than urban young drivers.

The campaign, which was an idea by the NFYFC’s Chairman of Council Milly Wastie, also includes practical driving sessions with a company called Drive Doctors and places on these courses have also been subsidised by NFU Mutual.

Members across England and Wales are encouraged to book on one of the remaining six Brake courses that are free:

  • Farmers’ Weekly Office, Surrey – Friday 17 May (Southeast)
  • NFU Mutual Office, Warwickshire – Saturday 1 June (West Midlands)
  • Jimmy’s Farm, Suffolk – Date TBC (Eastern)
  • Newark Showground – Saturday 14 September (East Midlands)
  • Gwent YFC Office – Saturday 26 October (Wales)
  • Yorkshire Museum of Farming, York - Saturday 19 October (Northern)


Members should contact Christina.evans@nfyfc.org uk or call 02476 857227 to book a place.

Congratulations to our Drive it Home champions
: Kate Lyons (Chew Valley YFC), Lisa Hayward (Shefford YFC), Ben Cavill (Falmouth YFC), Sam Allen (Bicester Seniors YFC), Robert Williams (Hereford and District YFC), Alex Ross (Kington YFC), Rachel Retter and Becky Pratt (Cheriton Tedburn YFC), Claire Worden (Lostwithiel YFC), Nicola Chegwidden (St Columb YFC), Richard Atterton (Gillingham & Shaftesbury YFC), Emma Pascoe (Praze YFC), Georgina Monk (Threemilestone YFC), Victoria Hicks (Tewkesbury YFC).  


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