Essex Young Farmers column: Social events are coming in thick and fast – but farming duties do get in the way

Two healthy calves born at Adam's farm in the last month.

Two healthy calves born at Adam's farm in the last month. - Credit: Archant

What a month November was for Essex Young Farmers! With a very successful, Personality of the Year Ball, a comedy night and plenty of meetings and parties to keep the members very busy! writes Jess Roche.

November is always a busy time for us Essex lot, as events come thick and fast in the run down to Christmas.

Personality of the Year is an annual ball we hold, with a competitive element. Each year, one member, will be crowned “Personality of the Year”. This may sound simple, but with an interview on the night, followed by the contestants having to all demonstrate a “talent” not all is so straightforward. Especially, after one or two glasses of wine have been consumed during dinner! As with every year, it is a black tie event, and the girls love the opportunity to swap the wellies for heels, whereas the boys are just hopeful that their trousers haven’t got any tighter since the last ball, or a dedicated girlfriend/mother has taken their dinner jacket to the dry cleaners beforehand!

The County Office, organised a comedy fundraiser, with acts including Windsor, Gary Colman and Paul Edwards. The night was a great success, and hopefully raised some money to help the county office keep running! Our county officers, Mary and Jackie, are amazing! They keep us organised, remind us of deadlines, and are always around to help with any problems.

Although as a county, we like to prioritise our social life and country pursuits, sometimes farming does get in the way slightly! Dunmow Young Farmer, Adam, and his cousin Sam, found this after hosting a day’s shooting at home. A heifer started showing signs that a calf was on its way, so Adam and Sam had to rush down to the cow shed straight after shooting, still in full shooting attire! Adam had to get involved and have a “feel around” to assess the situation! Luckily a healthy bull calf was born, and the boys even managed to get to the pub in time for a well deserved pre-shoot meal drink; hopefully changing beforehand! With Young Farmers, it’s all in a day’s work!

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Ongar Young Farmers, hosted their annual “Onesie Party” where they encourage all members to wear adult babygrows in public. Most members got into the swing of things, and there were a wide range of onesies from tigers, penguins and a few reindeer! As I was frantically busy with work in the week up to the party, my mum offered to go to town and buy me one. She came back with a onesie designed to look like a Christmas tree, because she thought it would look cute! That is the last time I delegate my shopping!

My club, Dunmow, has been very busy. We had a top retired fingerprint expert from Scotland Yard, give us a talk on his work, and he even offered to take our fingerprints for us! We also took a Tuesday night visit to P & A Wood, a Rolls Royce and Bentley specialist dealer and repair centre, who very generously gave us a tour of their garage.

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Remember you can join at any time, so if after reading this article, you are interested in getting involved, ring the County Office on: 01245 360442 and they can give you all the information you need on where your nearest club is.

Whilst the boys were fascinated with the inner workings of these luxurious cars, the girls were more impressed with the interior optional extras, such as lights in the ceiling, and spent their time deciding which furnishings they would like in their future car!

Other clubs have been just as busy, with Maldon stretching their stomachs to the limit with their Man vs Food challenge. Wix have been keeping it seasonal, with Becky Robinson, a Wix member, teaching the others how to prepare and cook pheasants. Becky is famous for her butchery skills, and at Personality of the Year a few years ago, even showed the audience how to butcher a lamb, and what the different parts were, all still while she was in a ball gown! I hasten to add, it was not a live lamb! Halstead took things back to basics, with a primary school classic. Each member drew a picture of themselves and Halstead are having all these drawings put on a tea towel, for all to buy! It’ll be a great thing to look back on in a few decades time. Ash & Saf, used one of their Tuesday meetings, to really put across an important issue. They had a talk about giving blood, which I’m sure inspired many of them to register to donate. Colchester got lots of their members out for a meeting, as it was a tour of the Greene King Brewery, which I have been told was very insightful, and the delicious beer, went down very well with members!

We look forward now to December’s action packed calendar. Upcoming events include; the Colchester “C” themed party, where I’m sure there will be plenty of Christmas trees, cowboys and cows attending! A lot of the clubs also go for a Christmas meal, as well as raising money for charity by singing some carols. We may not have the best voices, but no one can fault our enthusiasm! We also have two of the biggest parties of the year in December, “Vallies”, a night where Wix Young Farmers hire out a whole club in Colchester for the members to party in, and the Essex YFC New Years’ Eve! This year will be a black tie affair, which I know the members are very excited about!

Remember you can join at any time, so if after reading this article, you are interested in getting involved, why not ring the County Office on: 01245 360442 and they can give you all the information you need on where your nearest club is!

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