National Federation of Young Farmers' Clubs

Fun, Learning, and Achievement

24 April 2020

Singing, dancing and parody performances were all entries to the YFC Isolation Talent Challenge, sponsored by Kuhn Farm Machinery.

The challenge, which was launched on 17 April, asked members to show off their talent in a short video performance to be shared on social media. They could do this with their household or by piecing together a compilation of videos made by club members.

Beth Thornbar, who is the safeguarding officer for Clitheroe YFC, got together with her sisters, niece and parents who are all living in the same household to record four minutes and 30 seconds of a ‘Mixed-up Medley’. The video included singing about isolation to the theme tune of Friends as well as dancing in their kitchen.

Beth, whose family have all been involved in YFC over the years and still support the club, said: “We had lots of fun making the video, even though we had to rush it as we only decided to do it a day before! It brought us many laughs throughout the making of it and kept us busy as a family.

“We wanted to show the ups and downs of lockdown life. We are very lucky to be isolating on a farm but we do miss our friends (all made through YFC) and the pub.” 

In Trefeglwys YFC in Montgomeryshire, the club made a funny montage from clips of YFC members miming to different songs. All of the sketches and songs had a link to being in isolation.

Club Chairman Aled Rees said: “The inspiration for this video was to give a reflection on how lockdown is in Trefeglwys, with an entertaining twist. Our members didn’t need asking twice to get involved and always love to add a comedic factor. The community and the public seem to be enjoying the video greatly during these difficult times.”

Members created their own short video and it took two days for one talented member to produce the full version.

“Our club is staying connected during these unprecedented times. We are competing in our Federation’s virtual competitions and have recently produced a Toilet Roll Challenge video. These challenges and competitions have united the club at a time when we are relying on technology and social media.”

The club is also getting involved in supporting the community through a local Covid-19 group by offering help to vulnerable residents.

Kate Hughes, Kuhn's Marketing and Communications Coordinator, said: ‘It was great to see so many YFC members getting involved in the YFC Isolation Talent Challenge last week, including amazing singers, dance routines and fun club efforts! We look forward to seeing the five selected entries in Greatest Online Agricultural Show in May! Well done everyone!’ 

Five of the talent entries will be chosen to go through to the national Challenge Final on 2 May at the Greatest Online Agricultural Show

24 April 2020

If you are planning for a career in farming, we want to hear from you. The most successful people are practical and commercially astute. They’re good with technology and excited by change.

They’re personable and positive. However many such characteristics you might already have, you can always improve them and acquire more. And there’s no better way to do this than by taking part in the Farmers Apprentice 2020. This unique competition sees 10 young people between 18 and 25 years old put through their paces via a series of practical and technical at bootcamp which will be held at Scotland's Rural College (SRUC) later in the year.

Cash prize

Previous competitors have described bootcamp as a life-changing experience – a chance to learn, make great contacts and lifelong friends, and potentially come away with a cash prize. This year, we’re offering the winner a whopping £10,000 to spend on furthering their agricultural education or business.

Tasks that test

All the tasks and tests will be very much rooted in real life – highlighting the genuine challenges facing British farmers, now and in the future. After all, it's the next generation that will pick up these challenges. Across such themes as arable, livestock, diversification, technology, marketing, environmental, financial management and data, competitors will have to think on their feet if they’re going to impress the judges.

No experience necessary

Don’t think that you need to have grown up in wellies to take part.  This prestigious contest is aiming to encourage the best business minds from all backgrounds to pursue a career in agriculture. 

How to enter

Go to and convince us – in 500 words or less – why you should be one of the shortlisted finalists. Deadline is 28 June. Finalists will be notified in July.

This page is sponsored by Farmers Weekly.  

23 April 2020

Due to the uncertainty of the Covid-19 pandemic, the 2019-20 NFYFC Competitions programme has been moved to 2020-21 – with an extension to the age ranges that can compete. 

The decision was made by YFC members who sit on NFYFC’s Competitions Steering Group and was based on the information and opinions provided by County Federations in England and Wales.

It means that in 2020-21 YFC members who are aged 27 or under on 1 September will still be able to compete. Clubs and counties are asked to check the ages that can compete in sports though, as insurance restrictions will still remain.

The Drama competition will not be re-run in 2021 though, as it is hoped that the final of this can still be held in August, depending on Covid-19 restrictions at the time. Instead the 2021 Performing Arts competition will be Pantomime, as these shows attract a bigger audience and can be more profitable for clubs and counties.

Grace Millbank, Chairman of the Competitions Steering Group, said: “It was not an easy decision to make but members’ safety has to come first and the feedback we received from counties showed it was going to be impossible to hold all eliminator rounds in time for us to be able to run the national finals.

“We know so many people have worked hard on the competitions so we wanted to ensure those achievements could still be recognised. This is why we will re-run the programme in 2021 and also extend the age ranges to ensure no one misses out on their last competing year.”

If Covid-19 restrictions are lifted and it is possible, the NFYFC is aiming to host the 2020 Performing Arts (Drama) finals in August and the Member of the Year finals will be held there too.

Teams have already won their place in the 2020 finals because the Area rounds were completed before the impacts of Covid-19 hit the UK. More information will be released about this competition nearer the time when the latest Government guidelines are reviewed.

YFC members should consult with their county offices for more information. 

22 April 2020

Bird boxes, tables, bags and garden furniture were just some of the items that YFC members upcycled from bits of wood or fabric in the YFC Isolation Revamp Challenge, sponsored by Tama. 

The Challenge, which launched on 10 April, asked members to make something new out of something old – using wood, metal, plastic or fabric. YFC members then had to share their before and after photos on social media and tag NFYFC.

Among the items was a bird box created out of wood by 11 year old William from Neath YFC and Tom from Beacon YFC created a summer-house style retreat in his garden made from old pallets.

But it was Kelmarsh YFC’s Ollie Rendle’s coffee table, made out of pallets and four horse shoes, that impressed NFYFC Chairman Dewi Parry the most.

Ollie (pictured right with his coffee table) was keen to make use of his spare time and has made similar items out of pallets before but nothing as complex.

Ollie said: “It’s the first challenge I’ve done but it’s a good way of keeping busy when not working. It took me an afternoon to make and it’s for a mate’s house.”

Ollie has been taking part in weekly club Zoom meetings and is now looking forward to seeing how his coffee table fares in the Challenge Final on 2 May at the Greatest Online Agricultural Show.

The Revamp Challenge was sponsored by Tama and Andy Lanczak said the company was impressed with the creations.

“Farmers showing another of their traits…..turning an item destined for the scrapheap into something useful. Well done everyone for their amazing ideas!”

You can still enter the Revamp Challenge to win a place in the final. Entries close on 27 April. 

22 April 2020

You won’t be travelling to Cambridgeshire for Cereals 2020 this June, but you can take part in online seminars and activities, including a young farmer programme that has been supported by NFYFC.

NFYFC has been working with the organisers of Cereals to help develop an exciting programme for young farmers that also involves YFC members. Whether it’s technical or business skills, networking, innovation or career opportunities, the new online features of Cereals are designed to appeal to YFC members.

Cereals LIVE’s young farmer programme offers a range of seminars and events including exploring future business opportunities and careers, business innovation and building your route into a tenancy.

NFYFC is also launching its new survey, which is supported by Defra through an annual grant to the NFYFC, during a special breakfast reception on 10 June at 9am, which will be hosted by YFC AGRI chairman and agronomist George Baxter, supported by Kuhn Farm Machinery UK Ltd.  George will officially launch the post-Brexit rural survey and give an update on the AGRI Ambition paper.

It’s a virtual reception so you’ll need to rustle up your own breakfast, but it offers a great opportunity for YFC members to share their breakfast on social media to help celebrate Great British produce by using hashtags #BritishFoodisGreat #CerealsLIVE2020 #YFCAGRI.

Winding up the show on 11 June at 7pm, George and fellow agronomist and Somerset FYFC chairman Tom Pope join farmer and columnist Joe Stanley and RABI’s Suzy Deeley for an interactive session called What's on your mind? 

YFC members can share questions with the guests beforehand and take part in a frank discussion about physical, mental and financial wellbeing, particularly pertinent during the current pandemic. Join in with this social chat with friends and colleagues and celebrate your part in the first online Cereals 2020 event.

Cereals LIVE 2020 – it’s free, interactive and waiting for you to register.

22 April 2020

Wearing a mask for an entire shift is making Britain’s key workers’ ears very sore. That’s why Alice, James and Emma Walmsley from Kent Estuary YFC decided to step in and start creating head bands to provide some relief for NHS workers. Emma Walmsley, 18, told us more about their mission.

Q. Why did you decide to make the headbands?

Originally I was asked to make some by a local lady whose sister works in hospitals and has been suffering from sore ears due to the masks rubbing against them. I thought it was a great idea so along with my sister Alice and brother James, we made over 100 headbands, which have been sent to a number of hospitals and care homes in the local area.

I usually run a café in Grange with my mum but I’m currently at home filling time. My younger sister Alice would usually be at school and James, 20, is a contractor, working long hours to get jobs done before silage time.

Q. Have all of you used a sewing machine before?

None of us had ever used a sewing machine before but we picked the skill up quite quickly and made over 50 in a night. However, we did all learn from a young age how to sew using a needle and thread. We have also all been able to knit and are well-known for our crafting skills in the local area. 

Q. Did you follow a pattern or make it up yourselves?

We had seen a pattern and used that idea. We made one which didn’t work as well as we hoped, so we altered the pattern to make the finished product as best as we could.

Q. How are you distributing them?

We have connections as I babysit for a few people that work in hospitals so I have passed some on to them.  As we live in a small town, everyone knows each other and the word soon got around that we were making them, so I had a few people contact us for them as well.

Q. How many have you made so far?

We have made well over 100 head bands and about 50 mini knitted straps for the back of your heads, which you also hook buttons onto. All the ones we have made have now gone out to hospitals and are all in use. If we are asked to make more, we will be more than happy to make some.

Q. How does it feel to be supporting the NHS at the moment?

It feels an honour to support the NHS, knowing how hard the job is as I have friends that work for the NHS. I’m so glad we have been able to help them in some small way. I’m hoping this will all pass over soon as they all deserve a well earned break!

Q. Would you encourage other clubs to do something similar?

It would be amazing for other clubs to help as we can’t supply enough headbands for each hospital. It’s such an easy pattern to pick up and learn it takes no time what so ever to make one. It’s a time killer as well as it’s filled so much boredom of an evening for us all.

Q. Are you able to share the pattern?

Use 15cm by 50cm piece of material (we have used old t-shirts). Fold it over, stitch the edging, turn them inside out and stitch the ends together to make a hoop. Finally add a button to each side of the band, half way around so the masks can hook onto them.


 Q. Are you managing to stay connected to your YFC at the moment and if so, how?

We are all staying in touch with our YFC friends via text as much as possible. 

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