30 July 2014
Lynsey Martin, Kent FYFC County Chairman, attended The Prince of Wales’s Food and Farming Summer School, which was hosted by the Organic Research Centre at Elm Farm in Newbury, and enjoyed a packed and informative few days.
The Prince of Wales’s Food and Farming Summer School has been held since 2007 and is inspired by The Prince of Wales’s leadership and keen interest over many years in environmental sustainability and the importance of supporting the wider farming community.
The three days included talks on sustainable farming, the impact of intensification on the environment and how to achieve sustainable intensification.
Lynsey said: ”I found the session on food security and sustainable intensification one of the most interesting. We talked about intensification costs, not just in terms of the environment but also health and the other effects of providing low cost foods.”
Lynsey also visited farms to see sustainable farming in action. Among them was a visit to Leckford Estate, otherwise known as the Waitrose Farm, to see the dairy enterprise and the rotary parlour as well as to learn more about how mushrooms are grown commercially.
Visiting a traditional agricultural enterprise also impressed Lynsey. At Helen Browning’s Organic at Eastbrook Farm there was a chance to see how pigs were being used to add nutrients and improve the soil.
Lynsey also went to the Home Farm on the Duchy Estate where she viewed the forestry and the agroforestry sections, which included rows of fruit trees and vegetable beds. Plans were being made for sheep to graze on the areas of grass around the trees and between the vegetable beds.
“I would be very interested to follow this up in the future to see how it worked. I would strongly recommend to anyone who gets the opportunity to go to The Prince of Wales’s Food and Farming Summer School to go for it. Coming from a conventional farming background, it was a great chance for me to expand my horizons and see some organic systems.”
Lynsey’s place was sponsored by The Meadowbrook Trust and organised through NFYFC. For further information about future opportunities, please contact AGRI Officer Jo Wyles.
20 July 2014
Children – and adults – have been learning more about where their food comes from when the Youth Forum tested out their new game at the CLA Game Fair this July.
Challenged with devising a new field-to-fork education game, the Youth Forum came up with Watch that Cowpat – a fun game where children must match the food product with its producer.
Participants must spin an arrow on a board, which will reveal the name of a food product and tell them which foot or hand they must place on the mat. So for example, if the spinner lands on milk, the participant must place their hand or foot on a dairy cow.
To add some extra fun to the game, there are also images of ‘cowpats’ scattered on the mat, which participants may have to put their hand in if the spinner lands on one.
The pilot game, which was sponsored by the Rural Youth Trust, was taken to the CLA Game Fair to test on visitors to the stand and received a positive response.
Youth Forum member Holly Finelay from Newbury YFC in Berkshire joined members on the stand on the Sunday.
“The response to the game has been really good. Some people have made some comments on it – such as wanting the mat to be bigger - so it has been a good place to test it here at the CLA Game Fair. It’s very educational and people are enjoying playing on it.”
NFYFC was at the show for three days promoting Young Farmers’ Clubs to visitors and showcasing the game. Youth Forum member Helen Bellew, from Devon FYFC, helped out on the NFYFC stand for three days and thought being there was a good way to promote Young Farmers' Clubs.
“It’s definitely worth us being at the CLA Game Fair as there are a lot of people from the countryside here who weren’t aware of Young Farmers’ Clubs,” said Helen. “We have been walking around the show handing out leaflets and we’ve had companies approach us who are interested in sponsoring the game too.”
This is the second show this summer where NFYFC have been promoting Young Farmers’ Clubs. The team joined the Livestock Event earlier in July as well to promote the Federation.
11 July 2014
In the heat of the summer sun, it was Northumberland FYFC who were crowned the winning team in Touch Rugby, with a team made up of boys and girls aged 14-16 years old from Cambo, Stamfordham and Tritlington YFCs.
They took the title after a hard-fought 4-1 victory over Warwickshire and were named the best YFC Touch Rugby team at the 2014 finals.
“It was an exhilarating and sometimes tense competition,” said Deb Walton from Northumberland FYFC. “The team played some outstanding rugby in fast-paced matches under hot conditions. The three girls played in every match as they could not be substituted and were amazing.”
Members Emily Varah and Phoebe Turnbull scored a try each to gain double points and there was some exciting passing and running from the team made up of team Captain Joseph White, Josh White, Archie Singer, Dan Lynn, Mark Statton. The winning try was scored by Joseph, who punched the air with excitement as he crossed the line.
In Badminton, the mixed doubles for members aged 14 years and under were won by Skelton YFC, with Winmarleigh YFC in second place and Culm Valley YFC in third.
The Rush Hockey finals, for members aged between 16 and 26, were won by Halstead YFC in Essex. Second place was Brandon & Wolston and Leamington Hastings YFCs from Warwickshire and in third place was Culm Valley YFC from Devon.
09 July 2014
A key event in the farming calendar, Vision of the Future 2014 is where Massey Ferguson will share its vision of the future of farming – a future which will create an improved and more profitable farming business.
For this chance of a lifetime two-day experience, Massey Ferguson will fly you out to Beauvais on Tuesday 26 August and fly you home on Thursday 28th, and during the course of the event you will:
• Visit the Beauvais two cab manufacturing facility
• Drive the very latest range of Massey Ferguson machines on a 2ha tractor test drive track
• Experience 35ha of field demonstrations and more than 200 machines on display
• Attend four professional agricultural seminars
• Learn from the experts and shape your own vision of the future
To enter the competition, describe in no fewer than 300 words why you think you should win this trip of a lifetime. Then send along with your name, date of birth plus contact email and telephone number and email it to Massey Ferguson no later than 31 July 2014.
Terms and conditions :
• Competition open to over 18s only.
• Entrants must be available 26th-28 August to attend the event
• One winner will be drawn at random and will be informed by telephone and email.
• Winner will be required to make their own way to and from Birmingham Airport.
07 July 2014
Belper YFC are the proud owners of the first ever trophy for a competition that was created to support the Federation’s Drive it Home road safety campaign.
Joe Plgrim and Joe Hall were shocked to find out they were the winners. “We didn’t really prepare that much for this,” said Joe Pilgrim who only joined the club 18 months ago. “We just turned up and gave it our best shot.”
Their best turned out to be the winning formula as they scored high marks in their hazard awareness test, which was kindly supplied by Right Driver, and their practical challenges. Contestants were asked to check over a car to identify its faults and then had to change a wheel.
Joe Hall said he felt competitions like this were important. “Anything to help people drive more safely on the road is a good thing.”
Nine teams took part in the Drive it Home competition and Tom Jameson amd Imogen Young from Lancashire A took third place, with Ashleigh Fenwick and Thomas Pattinson from Yorkshire B winning second place.
Competitors used a stripped down hazard awareness theory test from Right Driver, custom-made for the event. You can see how you would do in the test by visiting the page and using the username and password rightdriver and rightdriver. Or, have a go at full mock theory tests by visiting the Right Driver website.
The Drive it Home competition was one of nine national finals taking place on Competitions Day in Staffordshire.
07 July 2014
Perfection was how the judges described the winning entry for the 2014 Sewing competition.
The handmade oven gloves and apron by Siriol Richards from Carmarthenshire included intricate edging with a reversible design that could be worn with a pretty red heart pattern or a fun black and white cow print.
Siriol, who is 15 years old, came to the ceremony to collect her award and said: “I like making delicate things and I am a perfectionist so I kept re-doing it until it was perfect. It took me a few weeks on and off to do it. I Googled a few ideas and put lots of ideas together and that’s what came out.”
The Competitions Day held at the Staffordshire Showground also displayed all of the entries for the Journey of Tweed competition. A judge from the British Wool Marketing Board (BWMB) and Textile Designer Abena Halliday-Fox were present to judge the Tweed boards and were so impressed by the entries they are now going to put them on display in their offices.
Jessica Morgan from Warwickshire was named the winner out of more than 60 entries and the judges said the simplicity was what stood out.
Gareth Jones, from the BWMB, said “It was well presented and from the British Wool Marketing Board’s perspective, the process that the wool goes through from field to garment was concisely explained as it’s quite a lengthy and complicated process.”
“I love fashion and tweed - being a farmer you’ve got to like tweed! I first started off with the outfit and tried to think of something that would stick out and be different,” said Jessica. “I’m honoured to win. We’re quite a small county and so it’s amazing to be amongst all these other counties that have a lot of people competing. When I saw that I was up against 63 people, I thought I hadn’t got a chance.”
Jessica is now excited about the Fashion competition that has recently been added to the 2014-15 competitions programme.
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