On Thursday 2nd November, Staffordshire County Federation of Young Farmers Clubs (YFC) held their County AGM in the Ingestre Suite, County Showground, Stafford.   The evening was kindly supported by Pickering and Butters Solicitors, a firm of Staffordshire Solicitors who were founded over a century ago, with offices based in Stafford and Rugeley.   The County AGM was attended by over 250 invited guests and members of the Federation and is the most prestigious meeting of the Staffordshire YFC year.   

Emily Cartmail, gave her Chairman’s Report on the last year of all things Staffordshire YFC , highlighting her favourite memories and moments along the way including the food bank campaign she set up in hope of helping those less fortunate. She managed to collect over 1200 items for House of Bread in Stafford and also a donation of £175.  Emily also organised a send off to Julia Taylor, the federations County Organiser for the past 20 years with a poem read by the past 20 County chairs and Presidents. Emily, a member of Eccleshall Young Farmers said “It has genuinely been one of the best and most rewarding years of my life. Being invited to the Kings Coronation concert in Windsor Castle has been a highlight and a truly once in a lifetime experience. It hasn’t always been plain sailing, but it has honestly been one of the most enjoyable years and an absolute sheer delight and honour to be the County Chairlady of Staffordshire YFC.”

This year also saw the presentation of The FCN / YFC Kindness and Compassion Award, which was introduced to recognise a Staffordshire YFC member who has shown an example of outstanding kindness, compassion, and care to others during the last 12 months.  The award was presented to Max Hine of Leek YFC. Who has shown great leadership and compassion after the club experienced some hard times.

George Hawley, County President, who announced the award said “ Max has demonstrated the outstanding way YFC members can pull together in times of need. Max as club chairman of Leek YFC has shown a great deal of maturity and kindness.  He is a great example to his fellow YFC members and to us all.”

It was reported during the meeting that Staffordshire YFC had 669 members aged 10 – 28 years at 31st August 2023,

John Stone was elected the County President after his two years as Senior Deputy President.  John said “Thank you for electing me again as your County President.  I have been involved with Waterhouses YFC for 30 years and always enjoy hosting YFC events and competitions.  It is a pleasure to be amongst young farmers who are a very enthusiastic and dedicated bunch of young people.”

Richard Robinson was elected as the Senior deputy president for the federation.

The presentations of awards were made by Mr Stephen Cartmail, Staffordshire & Birmingham Agricultural Society Chairman, to the following Clubs and Individuals:

Most Outstanding County Officer:       Harry Butson-Competitions Chair and Olivia Lockett-Development Chair.

David Palij Award:  Awarded to the Club that has done the most for charity/community work during the last 12 months.

Winner: Ashley YFC; Runners up: Leek YFC

Manifold Marketing Award:  Awarded to the Club who best promotes their Club and engagement in Club, County & Community Events.

Winner: Ashley YFC,  Runners-up: Eccleshall YFC

The Richard Mottershead Club Programme Award: Awarded to the Club gaining the highest number of points within the Club Efficiency Competition for the Club Programme section.

Winner: Ashley YFC; Joint Runners up: Eccleshall YFC & Uttoxeter JNFU

Scrapbook Award: Awarded to the Club who produces the most interesting and unique scrapbook based on the activities of their own Club over the past membership year.

Winner: Ashley YFC, Runner Up: Lichfield YFC

Junior Stockjudging Cup: Winner: Waterhouses YFC, Runner Up: Uttoxeter JNFU.

Intermediate Stockjudging Cup: Winner: Chase YFC,  Runner Up: Leek YFC.

Senior Stockjudging Cup: Winner: Uttoxeter JNFU, Runner Up: Chase YFC.

Overall Stockjudging Cup: Winner: Chase YFC & Waterhouses YFC, Runner Up: Uttoxeter JNFU.

Most Improved Club – Competitions Cup: Awarded to the Club that has achieved the highest improvement in points for competitions from the 2020/2021 year.

Winner: Stone YFC; Runner Up: Eccleshall YFC

Small Clubs Trophy: Awarded to one of the four smallest Clubs in the County with regard to membership, that has achieved the most points throughout the year for competitions.

Winner: Cheadle YFC; Runner Up: Lichfield YFC

Mr Ken Unwin MBE Memorial Cup: Awarded to the Club who most improves in Public Speaking, Stock Judging, Carcase Judging and Tug of War.

Winner: Cheadle YFC; Joint Runners Up: Abbotsholme, Ashley and Chase YFC

Overall Competitions Cup:  Presented to the club with the most points for the Competitions that have been held for the last 12 months: 

Joint Winners: Eccleshall YFC and Uttoxeter JNFU; Runner Up: Chase YFC

W.H.D. Hobson Cup: Awarded to the Club with the highest increase in membership.

Winner: Chase YFC, Runner Up: Abbotsholme YFC

Newsletter Shield: For the best contribution to the Young Farmers’ Book of the Year

Winners: Ashley YFC;  Runner Up – Abbotsholme YFC

The David Stubbs Award: Donated by the Stubbs Family in 2022 in memory o Mr David Stubbs, Former County Chairman and Vice President of the Federation. It is awarded to the club who most improves in the competition areas which were davids passions. Namely, Dairy Stockjudging, Stickman of the year and Carcass Judging.

Winners: Chase YFC, Runners Up, Leek YFC.:

Mr & Mrs W.A. Taylor Senior Merit Award: Awarded to the most outstanding individual at Club or County level was presented Jessica Sammons and Natalie Bradley both of Eccleshall YFC who have both displayed outstanding leadership skills within their club and also to the County Federation.

Junior Merit Award: This is presented to the most outstanding junior individual at Club or County level was presented to Molly of Eccleshall YFC who has thrown herself to an array of activities and helped at many events within her club as well as at county events..

YFC Travel Certificates along with NFYFC Certificates of Achievement were also presented to all members who had taken part in the National Federation of Young Farmers finals of various competitions throughout the year too. 

The final awards of the evening are the most prestigious to receive and are judged throughout the year as a “Club Efficiency” Competition, which encapsulates all aspects of a YFC Club.  The aim of the competition is to encourage members and Club Officers to work together as an effective team for the benefit of all members.  Judges look for all aspects of how the clubs are run and hope to see good club administration and record keeping, strong leadership and governance and active promotion of the clubs through publicity and community engagement.  They also want to see teamwork, ideas and enthusiasm from all club members.  From this competition, the following awards were presented:

Most Outstanding Chairman:                Winner: Tom Bowers, Eccleshall YFC

Runner-up: Danny Emmott, Ashley YFC

Most Outstanding Secretary:                Winner: Natalie Bradley, Eccleshall YFC
Joint Runners-up: Olivia Lockett, Ashley YFC & Hollie Kelly, Chase YFC

Most Outstanding Treasurer:                Winner: Toby Hall, Uttoxeter JNFU
Runner-up: Charlotte Martin, Ashley YFC

Most Outstanding Club Leader:           Winner: Jack Salt, Ashley YFC

Runner-up: Jessica Sammons, Eccleshall YFC

Club Efficiency Shield:                            Winner: Ashley YFC
Runner-up: Uttoxeter JNFU

Emily rounded off the meeting with a presentation to commemorate her year in office. She presented all past county chairs and presidents with a gold badge to say thank you for everything they have done for the federation. Emily also has donated enough badges for the next 30 years of County Chairs and Presidents. 

Staffordshire YFC continues to thrive and offers young people living and working in the rural areas of the county who are aged 10 and 28 years a wide range of opportunities to enjoy competitions, social events, sports, travel, meeting new friends and learning new. Anyone who is interested in joining their local YFC club, please contact the County Office on 01785 248645 or email countyoffice@staffsyoungfarmers.org.uk for more information The website www.staffsyoungfarmers.org.uk has updated information about Staffordshire YFC and the local clubs to find out more.