National Federation of Young Farmers' Clubs

Fun, Learning, and Achievement

22 July 2013


The time has come to make one of the biggest decisions in the YFC calendar – the fancy dress theme for Annual Convention!

In May 2014, thousands of Young Farmers will be returning to Blackpool for NFYFC’s 82nd AGM and as always YFC members are working hard to make next year’s event bigger and better than ever.

One of the highlights of the weekend is the fancy dress party on Saturday night and we’ve set up an online poll where members can vote for the fancy dress theme.

The NFYFC Events steering group have whittled it down to four fancy dress options – Americana, YFC, Smurfs and Circus – so make sure you get voting for your favourite!

To vote, fill in the poll on the right hand column of this page.

18 July 2013


Accessing NFYFC training will soon be easier than ever, with Train the Trainer courses set to be delivered in each NFYFC Area.

The changes come after the NFYFC Trainers Forum, which launched in April to support YFC members delivering training, highlighted a need for more localised events.

The Train the Trainer course is open for any YFC members to attend, and teaches them how to develop and deliver their own training sessions. Those who successfully complete the courses also receive an internationally recognised certificate in staff development. 

Area Train the Trainer courses will be piloted in 2013/14 and will be supported by Defra. With many more courses taking place, each area will be required to organise the venue for their own course with a maximum of 10 people on each. 

NFYFC Training Officer Sandra James said:

“We hope that this project will enable each area to receive stronger support in setting up their training teams as well as gaining new ideas and initiatives for their County and Club Officer training days.”

For more information on area training courses, contact Sandra James on 02476 857207 or email

18 July 2013


Honorary Life member William Houseman has sadly passed away and members from across the Federation are attending his funeral today in Yorkshire.

William who was a Life Member of NFYFC was appointed in recognition of his work with many generations of Young Farmers’ Club members. He allowed them to gain a great sense of achievement whilst having plenty of fun along the way.

He has worked with the Yorkshire FYFC for many years and will be greatly missed.

NFYFC Operations Manager James Eckley said:

“I know William enjoyed his role very much indeed and the NFYFC has been very lucky to have his support and encouragement over the years.”

The funeral is being held at 3pm today at Ripon Cathedral in Yorkshire.

Donations are welcomed for the British Heart Foundation and can be sent to the Funeral Directors W Bowers, Birstwith Road, Hampsthwaite, HG3 2EU or call 01423 770258.

12 July 2013

Cumbria came out top of the counties at the 2013 NFYFC Dairy Stockjudging Finals at the Great Yorkshire Show after winning four awards, two of them first places.

When it came to teamwork, Cumbria’s two teams were both in the top three. Cumbria A’s team stock judging skills were deemed to be the best in the competition, while Cumbria B’s team were in third place behind Lancashire A.

Robert Lawrence from Cumbria also won the Intermediate Dairy Stockjudging trophy and Daniel Bargh came second in the Senior Category. 

Robert’s brother Michael was in the winning Cumbria A team:

“We won the team trophy three years ago and it feels good to win again. I’ve been stockjudging for six or seven years and myself and my brothers work on a dairy farm all day so I think you defiantly get better with practice.”

Blue skies and sunshine made a perfect backdrop for this year’s Dairy Stockjudging competition. And it seems the sun was also shining on Yorkshire, who walked away with two first prizes in the Junior and Senior categories. Jennifer Booth came first in the Seniors and Megan Beecroft was the best in the Juniors.

The aim of the annual competition is to give members the opportunity to put their training to the test by judging high quality livestock and to present their findings to industry experts. Members also have the opportunity for feedback and advice from the experts.

The winners were as follows:

Team results
1st place: Cumbria A
2nd place: Lancashire A
3rd place: Cumbria B

Senior Category
1st place: Jennifer Booth, Yorkshire
2nd place: Daniel Bargh, Cumbria
3rd place: James Pratt, Yorkshire

Intermediate Category
1st place: Robert Lawrence, Cumbria
2nd place: Steven Harris, Cornwall
3rd place: Rhys Jones, Carmarthenshire, Lauren Meredith, Herefordshire, Shannon Belfield, Staffordshire

Junior Category
1st place: Megan Beecroft, Yorkshire
2nd place: Chlow Harris, Herefordshire
3rd place: James Hodgkinson, Derbyshire

For the full results visit our competition results page and check out all the picture from the event on the NFYFC Facebook Page.

10 July 2013

Young farmers have given feedback to the Department for Transport on possible restrictions for new drivers ahead of the green paper on young driver safety that is due out later this year.

The National Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs’ (NFYFC) National Chairman of Council Milly Wastie met with the Department for Transport this week to share feedback from young drivers who live in rural communities.

As one of the largest rural youth organisations in the UK, the government department was keen to hear more about the Drive it Home campaign, which is supported by NFU Mutual. They also wanted to know how any new driving restrictions would affect young rural drivers.

Using feedback from members, the NFYFC highlighted the impact new regulations could have on work and social lives but also insisted that changes were needed to save lives.

There are suggestions that a new Graduated Driving Licence (GDL) could be implemented that would impose restrictions on new drivers for the first 12 months, including curfews on driving hours and passenger limits.

The proposals are aimed at reducing the high number of injury collisions that young people are having in their first year of driving.

While NFYFC is in agreement that the GDL could help to save more lives, the organisation is campaigning for exemptions for young people in rural areas who need to drive at night for work or college.

The NFYFC is also calling for rural roads to be included in the driving test and for more rural communities to provide wider transport options for young people in their local area.

Recent research by Road Safety Analysis, that was conducted in support of the Drive it Home campaign, revealed that young rural drivers are 44% more likely to have an injury collision than urban young drivers.

Milly Wastie said: “We really appreciated the opportunity to meet with the Department for Transport to share young farmers' views. As many of our members work long hours on farms, there is a need for exemptions on some of the proposed restrictions – such as curfews on driving after 11pm.

“We must work together to tackle road safety and to save lives and we welcome more opportunities to input into the proposals when the Green paper on road safety is released later this year.”

 For more information about the Drive it Home campaign click here. 

09 July 2013


Members are supporting a new review into the future of farming that highlights the barriers faced by people starting careers in British farming.

The review was published by experts in farming, business and education that were brought together by Farming Minister David Heath in January. It sets out what actions they think are needed to attract new talent to careers in agriculture.

NFYFC members gave input into the review during the ARAC Forum at Annual Convention when Chair of the Future of Farming Review Group, David Fursdon, attended the session [pictured].

National Chairman of Council Milly Wastie said: “As one of the largest rural youth organisations in the UK, our members were asked for input into this Review and we are pleased to see that some of the issues we highlighted have been acknowledged. We have a big challenge ahead around generation renewal and the Review’s recommendations offer hope to thousands of young people seeking a successful future career in agriculture.”

The Future of Farming review was established to look at what can be done to make farming a more attractive career choice and to improve access for talented, entrepreneurial people.

The review’s recommendations include:
•    better promotion of the breadth of employment opportunities in farming;
•    more advice for farmers on succession and retirement planning;
•    better provision of affordable housing in rural areas for farmers;
•    promoting farming as a highly skilled professional career; and
•    the industry taking greater responsibility for training including business skills for new entrants.

Announcing the publication, review chairman David Fursdon said:  “We have gathered views from all areas of the agricultural sector and from across the country and thank those organisations for sharing their wealth of knowledge and expertise.

“We are calling for the farming industry to take more responsibility for its own future and for the Government to support them in doing so.”

Milly Wastie attended the launch event in Hertfordshire with members Luke Abblitt, Duncan Howie and Jon Eayrs. The four put questions to a panel of farming experts including David Fursdon and Farming Minister David Heath and were interviewed for a range of publications and for radio and television stations [see Jon pictured right being interviewed by BBC Look East].

Farming Minister David Heath said: “There is a wealth of career options in farming and it is vital that we are able to attract the brightest and best to fill these roles. To do this we need to break down some of the misconceptions and practical barriers.

“I will continue to work with leaders across farming, banking, business and education to promote jobs in farming and make it easier for new entrants to forge successful careers in the industry.” 

For more information and support about the Future of Farming click here.


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