The highlight of the Young Farmers’ year took place on Saturday when the Bedfordshire Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs held their 68th Country Show & Rally at Herne Manor Farm in Toddington, writes Peter Humphreys.
This year the event was hosted by the Woburn & District Young Farmers’ Club and Heathcote Farms Ltd.
More than 2,500 people attended; 400 of who were members and the rest friends, family and public who had come out to see the young people take part in their competitions.
The county is made from seven clubs; Bedford, Biggleswade, Blunham, Leighton Buzzard, North Beds, Silsoe and Woburn, who are all part of the 25,000 members in the National Federation.
The day started at 7am with the flower arrangers creating a variety of wonderful displays, some of which could easily be taken for those of professional florists.
Whilst this was happening other members were dropping off their prepared cookery and handicrafts entries, which ranged from fruit sculptures, knitting and sewing to wooden garden toys.
As well as individual members competing against one another, there were many club events. There was a live flower class to decorate a bicycle won by Bedford, with Leighton Buzzard coming second. A life-size papier-mâché cow painted showing various cuts of meat was won by Leighton Buzzard. The junior tug of war was won by Blunham, the senior men’s team was won by Woburn and the senior ladies won by Leighton Buzzard. Other events included scarecrow making, pottery and sausage making.
Champion Ram was awarded to Henry Hunt, Dairy Animal to Jack Fuller, Beef Heifer to Will Ludgate and Best Breeding Pig to Henry Shaw. Biggleswade members Hettie Rogers won the under 14.2hh show jumping class and Ella Rogers won the over 14.2hh. Clare Kennedy of Woburn took home many pieces of silverware by gaining the most points in the handicrafts and cookery sections. She also left sporting a banner declaring her Miss Beds YFC along with Roger Parrish who was crowned Mr Handsome Harvester. Helen Humphreys won the trophy for most points gained in the flower arranging classes.
The final event of the day was the much-anticipated decorated floats. With the theme of famous families, trailers were dedicated to The Simpsons, Thunderbirds, Flintstones, Addams Family, Trotters, Mario Brothers and The Weasleys. After each club had paraded around the main ring, dressed in the style of their float and the judging had been announced, the long awaited flour and water fight took place.
A special thank you goes to the Robinson family for hosting the day and to the rally committee for organising this and several other events in the run-up.
> Split into junior, intermediate and senior, people can join Young Farmers at any age from 10 to 26 and enjoy a wide variety of meetings and talks which take place at least once a week throughout the year. Further information and photos of all YFC events at www.bedsyfc.co.uk