Suffolk Young Farmers column: Looking back on a fantastic year

The nativity which followed the tractor run,

The nativity which followed the tractor run, - Credit: Archant

Firstly can I start by wishing our members, current and past, our supporters and fantastic sponsors a very Happy New Year, writes Suffolk Young Farmers co-ordinator Tory Lugsden.

line up of tractors from the tractor run at Saxtead Millhouse.

line up of tractors from the tractor run at Saxtead Millhouse. - Credit: Archant

The Young Farmers are already well into planning for 2016 and we have so much to look forward to we are confident that this year will be even bigger than 2015.

Looking back on last year there are so many fantastic events that we held and were involved with.

My personal highlights definitely include Supermoo winning the mascot race at the Suffolk Show for the second year in a row, our Charlotte’s stockjudging competition – such a proud and emotional day, our most successful Muck Move for many years, membership up by 20% across all clubs, a hugely successful year financially for the federation and a committed and enthusiastic new committee voted in.

Our new chair, Tom Walne, has set his stall for his year as chairman which we encourage all chairs to do, be they club or county chairs. When a chair has an idea of what they want to achieve from their time in post it helps them and us find the direction the federation is going in their term.

A line-up of tractors from the tractor run at Debach.

A line-up of tractors from the tractor run at Debach. - Credit: Archant

Tom’s aim for the federation for his time as chair is to reintroduce some of the traditional elements of Young Farmers and to socialise more. There can be no arguing with either of those and we started with his first big event of Young Farmers Fireworks which was spectacular and such a great start to his reign. As the slightly nervous person who fills in the risk assessment it was a delight to me to get through this event, profitably, without incident and most importantly with huge smiles all around.

Tom’s second dream event was to bring a Tractor Run to Young Farmers. Yet again, the risk assessment lady got a bit nervy, but having been the lead driver in the modern machines I would only have had myself to blame had it gone wrong! This event could not have been more right. It was the most incredible sight to see 38 Santa-clad tractors taking a Sunday afternoon trip around Debach, Hoo, Framlingham, Earl Soham, Otley and back to Debach. We were delighted to welcome vintage and modern machinery for the day and it is possibly one of the most emotional things to watch, Tom’s dream came true, it looked amazing and hopefully we didn’t hold up too much traffic whilst raising funds for our charity this year, the East Anglian Air Ambulance. My favourite event ever and I cannot wait to do it again next year. Watch the video on our website

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We certainly finished 2015 on a huge high and cannot wait for next year to keep getting bigger and better. We wish you all a Happy, healthy and prosperous 2016.