Mar 2017 13

The best speakers in the County met at the George Hotel, Penrith for the final of Cumbria Young Farmers’ After Dinner Speaking Competition on Thursday 2nd February. Team members from Crook, Caldbeck, Raughton Head and Lowick YFCs showed great skill and confidence. All the competitors had clearly prepared their speeches, researching topics in great depth.

 The standard of the competition was exceptionally high, with speakers giving after dinner speeches on behalf of The Confederation of Bee Keepers, The Society of Plough Persons, The Great British Bake off Fan Cub and The Royal Society of Dentists. Those taking part in the competition took on the full characters and interests of those they were speaking on behalf of with members putting in appearances as; Robbie “Bee”ber, Susie Suds and Will Turner-Sod to entertain the audience.

Mr Frank Chester and Mr Craig Brough had a very difficult time judging the competition, but after some consideration they placed the Lowick YFC team of Alice and Will Longmire, Thomas Woodburn, Emma Cooper and Esther Lambert in first place, Raughton Head YFC’s  Ella Swainson, Euan Bulman, Amy Blamire, Victoria Baker and Grace Rothery took second place and Caldbeck YFC’s team of Emma Armstrong, Sam Booker, Laura Potts, Martin Bush and Rosie Thompson were placed third.

Meanwhile the finalists in the YFC Member of the Year (17 and under) competition were interviewed by judges Mrs Christine Knipe and Mrs Christina Story. This was an extremely closely fought competition with all of competitors giving excellent interviews of a very high standard. Mrs Knipe, Chief Executive of the Westmorland County Agricultural Society commented that she had never seen  such a high standard of competitors in all her time of judging, adding that any one of the competitors could represent Cumbria in the national rounds of the competition

The competitors each produced a cv and a personal statement. Following a presentation of their achievements, they were interviewed and given the opportunity to tell the judges about their interests, academic achievements and what career paths they hoped to follow. The results were very close with Ruth Cooper from Lowick YFC placed first, Brampton YFC’s Emma Atkinson placed second and Emilia Burbury from Raughton Head YFC placed third

The first 3 teams and competitors from both competitions will now go onto compete at the Northern Area weekend, hosted by Yorkshire YFC on the 25th February.