Nov 2015 23

Cumbria Young Farmers and their guests braved the torrential rain to congregate at The George Hotel, Penrith, for their Forty First Annual General Meeting on Friday where they celebrated an exceptionally successful year thanks to the hard work and commitment of their members.

Ex-President, Mr Nick Utting opened the meeting with apologies from President Mr John Geldard, who was unable to attend the meeting due to his on-going recovery from a recent operation. Speaking on behalf of John, Nick drew special attention to how lucky all those gathered were to live in such a safe and peaceful part of the country. He continued by stating how amazing and talented our young farmers were and of the bright future ahead of them.

After thanking Mrs Rachel Geldard for attending the meeting to present prizes and asking her to pass best wishes for a speedy recovery onto John, Nick welcomed Mr Rory Steward, MP to say a few words on behalf of those attending the meeting.
Mr Stewart began by regaling the audience with his experience of young farmers and their activities and continued by paying tribute to their ingenuity, fun, commitment and integrity.

Chairman Mark Hurst gave the Annual Report which highlighted an extremely successful year for members at Club, County, Northern Area and National levels with Cumbria YFC sweeping the board at all 3 Northern Area events. Cumbria won the NFU Trophy for second place in Drama, the Drama Plate for best Male Actor, the Lloyd Bank Plaque for Junior Public Speaking, the Lloyd Bank Plaque for Intermediate Brainstrust, the Lloyd Bank Plaque for Senior After Dinner Speaking, the Olive Clarke Trophy for Junior Reading and finally, the most important, the Adrian Willis Trophy for Speaking and Sports.

At the Northern Area Field Day the Trophy Cabinet was once again filled, with Cumbria winning the East Riding Shield for Non NFYFC and Stock Judging competitions, the Sheep Shearing Trophy and Cumbria A bringing home the Earl of Derby Trophy as Field Day winners, with the B team only 11 points behind in 2nd place.

Cumbria continued their winning streak at the Stockman of the Year Competition, winning the Adrian Willis trophy for Best Overall Team, the Davidson shield for Best Junior Team. Paul Gardner won the Junior Stockman of the Year Trophy and Henry Knowles won the Senior Stockman of the Year Trophy.

Finally, Mark spoke about how Cumbria had reached the pinnacle of its success by being presented with the NFU Trophy for Champion County for the fifth year running at the Annual Convention in Torquay. The first time any County has won this award so many times consecutively in the history of the award.

The AGM then continued in fine style, with Young Farmers proceeding with great wit and humour to propose and second their elected officers for the year. Mr Stephen Brough was formally elected as the new Cumbria YFC President. Stephen has extensive links with Young Farmers stretching back many years and runs a successful family based dairy farm. Richard Carruthers, Crook YFC was elected Chairman. Richard is an electrician working in the south of the county.

The newly elected Vice-President is Mrs Linda Pigney, who runs a family business in Appleby and is a long-time Cumbria Young Farmers stalwart and supporter. Vice Chairman is Christina Coulthard of Caldbeck YFC. Robert Wharton of Dodd & Co was voted in for his 15th year as Treasurer. Robert was a member of Longtown YFC and served as both Treasurer and Chairman during his years with the club.

Mrs Rachel Geldard presented the awards alongside Mark Hurst, announcing 4 special trophies awarded on the night: – The Top Club Award for the Club with the greatest increase in membership over the year went to Walton YFC.

The Alan Bowe Charity Award went to Kent Estuary YFC, who raised £7037. 00 over the year, £4000 of which was donated to St John’s Hospice.

The Mrs Dorrie Galbraith Trophy for the member making the greatest contribution to Cumbria YFC went to Graham Lambert of Sedbergh YFC for his support of the Southern District and its clubs and his committment to Cumbria YFC as a whole.
Finally the PFK Chairman’s Trophy for the Club making the most effort was presented to Greysouthen YFC.

The evening culminated with a vote of thanks from Amy Swinbank of Eden Valley YFC and all in attendance agreed that it had been a fantastic and memorable evening.

2015 AGM