YFYFC Members on BBC Radio York

BBC Radio York
Yorkshire YFC Members talk all things “Young Farmers” with BBC Radio York – Harriet Lyon (Rillington YFC) & Tom Barley (Great Smeaton YFC)

On Friday 22nd September, members from Yorkshire YFC joined BBC Radio York for an interview all things “Young Farmers”.

Listen to Harriet Lyon from Rillington YFC and Tom Barley from Great Smeaton YFC chat with BBC presenter Jonathan Cowap.

National Young Farmers’ Week – 18th to 22nd September

YOUNG farmers from across Yorkshire are supporting a public awareness week to celebrate the organisation’s 85th anniversary.

National Young Farmers’ Week, which runs until Friday (22nd), aims to give an insight into the lives of the 23,500 members nationally of the Young Farmers’ Club (YFC). The campaign has received some high-profile support from a wide cross-section of people, ranging from Radio 1 DJ Chris Stark to television presenters Adam Henson and Jimmy Doherty.

Yorkshire is one of the largest counties by number of young farmers in the country. It has more than 1,700; with 45 clubs spread over nine districts. There is a national network of 619 clubs, with members aged between ten and 26.

YFC has been given a huge boost this year with the appointment of a new president, Farming Today and Countryfile presenter Charlotte Smith. She made a special visit to this year’s Great Yorkshire Show to support the county’s members.

“I want the nation to know more about one of our countryside’s best kept secrets,” says Charlotte.

“YFC is more than farming – it’s one of the only rural youth services we have that helps develop young people’s skills and provides a much-needed social network in the countryside.

“I’m always going on about involving the next generation and how farming needs to widen its appeal so supporting the young farmers’ movement is important to me.”

Clubs across Yorkshire are just getting back into the swing of their weekly meetings after the traditional harvest break and many are organising special new member evenings.

Chairman of Yorkshire YFC John Craddock believes very strongly that as long as somebody has a “rural mindset” then their background is irrelevant.

“Young farmers is a true rural organisation and is no longer just for farmers,” said John, who farms at Kirklington, near Masham.

“Instead clubs have evolved and weekly meetings are very diverse. One week they can be doing something very traditional like cattle judging and the next they can be go-karting or public speaking.”

Fundraising is also a big part of the YFC movement, with the Yorkshire region’s members raising more than £45,000 for different charities last year. This year’s efforts included a mammoth cycle ride of 360 miles from county headquarters in Knaresborough to Torquay, raising more than £4,500 for the Anthony Nolan charity.

For further information about joining YFC visit www.yfyfc.org.uk or telephone the county office on 01423 865870.

Tom Barley wins Junior Member of the Year

Young farmers’ clubs are beginning to start back with their regular weekly meetings after the traditional harvest break. The winner of this year’s national Junior Member of the Year title is North Yorkshire teenager Tom Barley. He spoke to YFYFC about his success …

17 year-old Tom, who lives on a mixed beef and sheep farm near Northallerton, is a member of Great Smeaton Young Farmers’ Club (YFC).
LIt was a case of third time lucky for Tom, as this was his third attempt at entering the prestigious competition.

“Rather than give up I picked up all the tips I could from my previous two attempts and really went for it on this, my third go,” explained Tom, who is studying agriculture at Askham Bryan College.

“I joined YFC when I was 13 and it was the best thing I ever did. I’m much more confident and it’s amazing to think that I now don’t mind standing up and speaking to a room full of strangers. I’ve done public speaking competitions with young farmers and, for the Junior Member competition, there was a presentation element. You had to say what you’d been up to with your club and also what you’d done, month by month, in your normal day-to-day life.

“I’m pretty busy, selling my sheep and pigs, helping out at Northallerton Market and playing football and squash. I also get stuck into everything going on at YFC and particularly enjoy taking part in stockjudging competitions.”

Tom is keen to get more involved with the YFC movement.

“There are tremendous opportunities with young farmers,” said Tom. “It’s really true when people say you get out of it what you put in. The more you get involved the more people you meet and the more fun you have. Eventually, I would like to go somewhere like New Zealand or Australia and YFC runs travel scholarships, which would be a great way of seeing a bit of the world.”

As a result of his win Tom will now join the YFC’s national youth forum, alongside the other six finalists in the competition, and will help to represent the younger members of the federation.

“I am always saying to our junior members that they have as much of a say in the running of their club, county and national federation as the older members. When I was younger, I didn’t feel like I had a lot of say in decisions but everyone can and should put their views forward,” said Tom who is assistant secretary of Great Smeaton, as well as sports captain and looking after the juniors for competitions.

The other finalists that will join Tom on the national youth forum are: Gemma Owen from Montgomery FYFC, Jessica Elliman from Berkshire FYFC, Peter Cotton from Staffordshire FYFC, Amy Stubbs from Lincolnshire FYFC, Charlotte Scott from Somerset FYFC and Beth Maskell from Suffolk FYFC.


Northern Area Stockman 2017 Results

Yorkshire YFC once again showed their strength at Northern Area Stockman 2017 on Saturday 15th July, held at Hexham & Northern Marts.

Tom Barley of Great Smeaton YFC, recently awarded NFYFC Member of the Year, triumphed coming home first place in the Junior Stockman, with the Yorkshire B Junior Team winning overall. A mention must be given for Jacob Ryder, Farnley Estate YFC, who scoped 100/100 for the Breeding Ewes coming a clear first place in the class.

Other Junior awards were given to Elizabeth Elgie, Boroughbridge YFC, for third place in Dairy.

In the Senior competition, Emily Ward, Whitby YFC, came third in Dairy and Chloe Dolphin, Silsden with Skipton YFC, also came third in Butchers Lambs.

Across all competitions and classes, Yorkshire B came second, being pipped by Lancashire A. Cumbria A followed in third place.

Well done to all Yorkshire YFC members, and good luck with the next round.

Full Results

NA Stockman 2017 Results

NA Stockman 2017

Knaresborough YFC Presentation to Yorkshire Air Ambulance

After wrapping the debate up, Charlotte Smith joined members of Knaresborough YFC in handing over a cheque for £8,194 to the Yorkshire Air Ambulance. The money was raised with a 126-tractor run held in memory of long-serving member Mike Spink, 24, who died in an accident whilst working in New Zealand.

Steven Brown, chairman of Knaresborough YFC, said: “The sad circumstances of  Mike’s death pulled us all together, taking the total the club has raised for the air ambulance over the last five or six years to over £15,000.”

Helen Callear, Yorkshire Air Ambulance’s fundraising manager, said: “I want to say a massive thank you to the YFC members for turning something so sad into something positive. There is no doubt in my mind that this money will save lives.”

A date for next year’s tractor run has already been set for March 11 2017

The cheque was presented as at the Yorkshire and East Riding YFC Joint Great Yorkshire Show Stand at the 2017 show.

YFC Debate at GYS – Food vs Environment

For the second year now, the Yorkshire and East Riding YFC Joint Great Yorkshire Show Committee have held a debate as part of their programme at the 2017 show.

As topical as Brexit is, we thought we would go for a topic that would attract a range of people, and not the dreaded word that is on everyone’s lips!

This year’s topic was a broad one, food verses the environment. Panellists included Charles Forbes Adam, owner of the Escrick Park Estate and representing the Country Landowners’ Association, James Mills, an Advisor for the National Farmers’ Union, Yorkshire Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs Chairman John Craddock and East Riding YFC Representative and Ecologist, Michael Wood.

The debate was chaired by BBC Radio 4’s Farming Today presenter Charlotte Smith, who is the new president of the National Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs, saying she would have been in trouble with her mother if she hadn’t made the journey from London to Harrogate for the Great Yorkshire Show.

“I was really flattered to be asked,” said Charlotte. “I’m always going on about involving the next generation and how farming needs to widen its appeal so supporting the young farmers’ movement is important to me.”

Charlotte did add though, that her mother – who lives near Dewsbury – would have had a “sharp word or two” to say if she hadn’t accepted the invitation to the Great Yorkshire.

James Mills said the bottom line was that “If a farmer isn’t in the black he can’t go green”, with Mr Forbes Adam an advocate of farmers needing to be savvy about balancing the role of countryside stewardship with making a profit; urging young farmers to spread the message about the good work they do.

The controversial subject of Glyphosate was touched on, with one young audience member asking about pesticides killing bees. John Craddock and Michael Wood were joined by the other members of the panel in voicing fears about ‘false news’ and the damage that can be done to farming’s image, especially through social media and with the strength of cash-rich lobbying parties.

All panellists highlighted the importance in farmers promoting all the good work they done in respect of conservation and the balance between food production and the environment.



Nidderdale Show YFC Classes

Nidderdale Show, due to be held at Bewerley Park, Pateley Bridge, on Monday 25th September 2017 is to host YFC Classes.

Classes can be entered by any member of the Yorkshire Federation of Young Farmers and include:

  • 410 – Decorated Eggs – maximum of 4 eggs on any theme. To fit in a display 14.8 x 21 cm
    (5.8” x 8.3”) (A5) – Junior
  • 411 – Four Decorated Buns – to be judged on taste and appearance – Junior
  • 412 – A Mug Stand – any medium, to be display with six mugs – Junior
  • 413 – A Cow Bell – made from suitable metal and include a 5 cm (2”) strap. Bell size 20 cm (8”) x 20 cm (8”) – Open
  • 414 – A Peg Bag – Agricultural theme – any medium. Max size 30 cm (12”) x 30 cm (12”) – Open
  • 415 – Three mini desserts individually labelled and ingredients to be displayed on A5. To fit in a display 30 cm (12”) x 30 cm (12”) – Open

Trophies to be awarded:

  • YFC Cup for most points gained by a Junior member of the Nidderdale Young Farmers’ Club in the Domestic Classes 410-412.
  • Rosemary Dawson Cup for most points gained by a Senior member (17 yrs and over) of the Nidderdale Young Farmers’ Club in the Domestic Classes 413-415.
  • The Hardcastle Trophy to be awarded to the Best Exhibit in the YFC Domestic classes (winner can be any YFC).

Entries close 2nd September 2017

Click here for the Nidderdale Show Schedule

The Big Summer Do 2018

Yorkshire YFC launch The Big Summer Do 2018

Date: Saturday 7th July 2018

Venue: To be Confirmed

4pm til 2am

Headline acts to include

  • Radio 1 DJs
  • Live Bands
  • House DJ
  • plus MUCH MORE

More information will follow very soon

Contact the Events & Finance Committee for more details or share any ideas