National Federation of Young Farmers' Clubs

Fun, Learning, and Achievement

24 February 2011

Cornwall Young Farmers gain Team Leading qualifications

Since November 2009, members of the Cornwall Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs (Cornwall YFC) have been taking part in a new initiative; the Club Development Programme. This is a joint collaboration between Duchy College and Cornwall YFC and offers developmental training and the chance to gain a qualification in team leading with The Institute of Leadership & Management (ILM).

Following an extremely successful first year of the programme, a celebratory presentation evening was held on 15th February, at the Pavilion Centre, Royal Cornwall Showground. The evening was chaired by Anthony Ellis (Cornwall YFC’s chairman) and saw Mr. Dave Linnell (CEO of Cornwall College) present 50 YFC members with their NVQ certificates. Mr. Dave Linnell offered his congratulations to the members and explained what a unique and special programme this has been and how important collaborations between the college and YFC are to the development of rural communities in Cornwall. The principal of Duchy College, Mr. Andrew Counsell also offered sincere praise to the members and to the programme.
It was great to see members and assessors in attendance to celebrate the steep learning curve and exciting journey over the past year and also to see the culmination of the programme after its extremely successful first year. We were delighted to welcome Chris Shepherd, manager of the Duchy College Training Agency and also Chris Robinson, the External Verifier for the programme from ILM.   

The overriding aim of the programme is that it has been led by Cornwall YFC and been designed for YFC members. Therefore to ensure the presentation evening celebrated the achievements of members as much as possible, Cat Ede from Callington YFC was asked to share her experiences and describe the benefits of the programme. Cat began by thanking members for attending to collect their certificates and explained how the programme has given members a further opportunity to gain a qualification and skills with YFC. Cat described how the NVQ has given her more confidence to take the role as Chairman for her club this year; by preparing her to chair meetings, to delegate work and to consider the safety of her club by ensuring risk assessments are completed. She explained how members in all clubs are now working as a stronger team, which is being demonstrated by the great sums of money raised and by the achievements of clubs in competitions. Cat then spoke about her progression to the level 3 programme and wished members participating in the programme this year the best of luck. Cat concluded by thanking Duchy College for offering Cornwall YFC this opportunity, the assessors and the YFC county office.   

24 February 2011

Wales YFC officers represent young people at NFU conference!

Representatives from Wales YFC recently attended the National Farmers Union Conference held in Birmingham.

Attending on behalf of the organisation was Enfys Evans, Wales YFC Chairman; Rhys Evans, Wales YFC Rural Affairs Committee Chairman; Marc Jones, Wales YFC Rural Affairs Committee Vice-Chairman; Kay Lewis, Wales YFC Rural Development Officer; Jonathan Williams, Radnor and Meinir Jones, Carmarthenshire. Roland Davies, Montgomery also attended through the Montgomery NFU branch.

The conference entitled, ‘Farming at the heart of the economy’, held over two days gave the opportunity for those present to be addressed by inspirational speakers and to meet leading figures within the agricultural industry.

YFC members attended a number of sessions some of which were politically themed where guest speakers included the Rt Hon Caroline Spelman MP, Secretary of State, Defra and Rt Hon Jim Paice MP, Minister of State for Agriculture and Food. Other sessions focused on business and what the future holds for farming. Members were also able to select a number of breakout sessions e.g Livestock, Dairy, Poultry etc and also breakfast workshops e.g Uplands, Tenants or the Next Generation which they could attend. These sessions enabled those representing the YFC to take part in discussions that were of relevance and interest to them. The conference came to an end with a question time session, which posed the question ‘Is modern agriculture palatable?’, the panel was chaired by Tom Heap, Broadcaster and questions were received thick and fast  for the panel who included Jay Rayner, writer, journalist and broadcaster, Peter Kendall, NFU President and Patrick Holden CBE.

“The informative conference gave YFC members an exclusive insight into issues that will have a great affect on their futures. On behalf of the organisation I would like to thank the NFU for their kind hospitality over the two days,” said Rhys Evans, Wales YFC Rural Affairs Chairman.

Ed Bailey, President of NFU Cymru said, “We always ensure that 10% of the Welsh delegation to the NFU conference is from the YFC. NFU Cymru fully recognises that in there lies the future of our industry. It always gives me a warm feeling to hear their enthusiasm and passion during the conference discussions. I’m pleased those that attended this year’s conference enjoyed the experience as we enjoyed their company and perspective.”

The conference was held on Tuesday the 15th of February and Wednesday the 16th of February 2011.

23 February 2011

Rambling, gambling and dung have brought new hope to stroke victims in Cornwall.

This year St Columb YFC was able to see the fruits of its fundraising efforts over 2010 ¬– a sponsored walk, music and dance evenings, a casino night, and selling bags of dung – help to buy a new machine to support stroke victims at the Royal Cornwall Hospital's Phoenix Ward.

St Columb YFC’s Tristan Thomas and Christine Paull visited the hospital to see for themselves the £1,500 EMG machine, which measures the rigidity of muscles and helps clinicians to gauge the state of the stroke.

Hospital Friends chairwoman Beatrice Dyer said the equipment had “made all the difference” for staff and the donation was a huge asset to the department.

"It's great to see where your money's gone," said Tristan, who issued a chairman's challenge for YFC members to walk from Fowey to Padstow, which they did over a weekend. “Thanks to all our members and families for raising the money.”
YFC treasurer Christine Paull added: “It's nice to know it's going to something local.”

St Columb YFC also donated £500 to Help for Heroes and £500 to Tanya's Courage, to help equip a room geared for teens undergoing cancer treatment.

22 February 2011

Theatre workshops planned for Wales YFC entertainment feast

Theatre workshops have been planned for members and supporters of Wales YFC in conjunction with the Drama Association of Wales and will be held during the new Entertainment Feast weekend on the 12th and 13th of March at the Grand Theatre, Swansea.

Nicola Walker, Chairman of the Wales YFC Training and Promotions Committee Chairman noted, “The aim of these workshops is to help build the members confidence in three different areas, drama script writing, theatre make up and costume. The workshops will be ran in English and Welsh, giving all members an equal opportunity to take part.”

Gwyneth Glyn will lead the drama script writing workshop which will focus on the golden rules of script writing, how to get started and guidelines on format. Originally from Bangor, Gwyneth is a singer, novelist, poet and playwright and she has written for Welsh language television including Pobl y Cwm.

Leading the session on how to apply make up correctly, the necessities in make up kit and theatrical make up will be Elen Thomas. Trained by a BBC trained Makeup artist in Production arts makeup, Elen has since worked on feature films, short films, music videos, theatre productions and a number of commercial and fashion photography shoots.

The golden rules of costume for a range of characters and how to make the best of a budget session will be ran by Iona Williams. She has worked extensively in costume for theatre and television and is currently working with Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru on the production “Deffro’r Gwanwyn” which will be touring at venues across Wales throughout March and April 2011.

Speaking on behalf of the Drama Association of Wales, Gary Thomas stated,
“It is great to have the opportunity to work with the YFC and with Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru in co-ordinating and providing these sessions. The sessions will give young people a taste of the subjects and will hopefully encourage some of them to try writing their own scripts and to be more confident in their costume design and application of stage make up. Who knows – it may be the first small step that leads to a career in the theatre”.
The weekend will also host the Wales YFC Welsh and English Entertainment competition which will be a showcase of YFC talents where members from across Wales will entertain audiences with colourful and professional half hour performances.

Tickets are now on sale from the theatres box office (01792 475 715) and those wishing to attend will be able to purchase a session ticket, a day ticket or a gala ticket for the whole weekend.


  1. Click to download the press release in Welsh

22 February 2011

Let us entertain you

Young Farmers in the Northern District Entertainments Finals played to packed audience at Nelson Thomlinson School and Whitehaven Civic Hall.

Judges, Bob Pritchard and Harriet Smithson were impressed with the variety and high standard of the performances.  The Best Actor award went to Chris Laird for his performance as “god” in their production of “Rainbow” – a play about Noah’s Ark.  Adam Gass and Naomi Little were also praised for their singing.

The Best Actress award was presented to Amanda Jackson who played a bully in Skelton’s production of “School Daze”.  Her piano accompaniment was also commended by the judges.

In Longtown’s production, “The Cumbrian Royal Variety Show” Julie Blaylock’s amazing performance on the accordion was highlighted as was Edward Harrison’s vet/doctor.

Drigg YFC were commended for their highly energetic performance of “The Animal Fair” where the whole cast put in an engaging performance as animals in a zoo.  Rebecca Oliver’s song as Patricia Peacock was highlighted as were the keep-fit penguins led by Chelle Buchanan.

Finally Raughton Head took us to a hilarious day at “The Show”.  The choreography by Lucy Cowen was admired by the judges as was the wit and humour of the script by Graham Holliday, Nicola Wilkinson and Louise Wilson.

Final results were: 1st Raughton Head, 2nd Drigg, 3rd Brampton and 4th Skelton.  These four clubs will perform at the County Final on 26th & 27th February at the Theatre by the Lake, Keswick – tickets from the box office.

22 February 2011

Brecknock Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs 64th Annual Drama/Entertainment and One Plus Festival was held at Theatr Brycheiniog, Brecon on 8th – 12th February 2011 supported by Barclays bank. Members competed in the Entertainment, Junior Drama, Senior One Plus and Junior One Plus competitions.

During the week long Festival, ten clubs competed and up to 250 young people performed on stage. Builth Wells YFC won the Entertainment competition with their production of ‘Big Trouble In Little China’ produced by David Price, Anne Davies and Anwen Nicholls, this same production won the NFU Mutual Trophy for Best Production of the Festival.  Builth Wells YFC won the junior Drama section with their production entitled ‘Exodus In XX Minutes produced by Ionwen Davies, Amanda Jones and David Price. There were 22 One Plus entries, eleven of which were senior and eleven junior entries. Christopher Davies from Llandefalle YFC achieved first place in the Junior One plus section with his “Guitar Medley” and Llandefalle YFC achieved first place in the Senior One Plus section with “The Only Way Is Up”.

The Brecon & Radnor Express sponsored the awards to members for their outstanding contribution to the Festival, Joe Dunn, Builth Wells YFC won Best Actor 26 years or under; Rebecca Price, Builth Wells YFC won Best Actress 26 years or under; Steffan Davies, Iwan Davies, Rhodri Workman and Fletcher Williams, Trecastle YFC won Best Actor 18 years or under and Heidi Davies, Sennybridge YFC won the Best Actress 18 years.

The FUW sponsored the awards to members for their outstanding contribution to the One Plus section of the Festival, Richie Davies, Sennybridge won Best Male Performance 26 Years or under and Bethan Jones, Sennybridge won Best Female Performance 26 years or under.  Steffan Davies, Trecastle received the Kirsty Jones Memorial Award for Best Performance under 16 years.

The talent within the Federation does not stop with the acting skills, all six Entertainment entries were original scripts, and written specifically for the Festival, Builth Wells YFC “Big Trouble in Little China” won the Builth Wells YFC Trophy for the Best Written Play.  

The Spin Dogs, awards for Best Set was presented to Builth Wells YFC with their production “Big Trouble in Little China”.
The best choreography was awarded to Llandefalle YFC Entertainment “Take Note”.
Brecknock YFC is very grateful to the two evening sponsors; The Prints of Wales and Barclays.  To The Brecon & Radnor Express and FUW for sponsoring the Best Performance awards and for everyone else who have supported the festival.

Builth Wells YFC will be representing Brecknock Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs at the Wales YFC Entertainment finals on Saturday 12th March 2011 at Grand Theatre, Swansea.


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