Shropshire Star

The young farmers of Shropshire celebrating 85 years of club's history

A young farmers' club in Shropshire will celebrate its 85th anniversary tonight and members say it continues to go from strength to strength.

Shawbury YFC members take part in activities in 1949

Shawbury Young Farmers will gather at Shrewsbury Town FC for a special anniversary ball and to reflect on the club's historic past.

Shawbury YFC members in more recent times

The club is part of the Shropshire YFC and National Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs, one of the largest rural youth organisations in the UK dedicated to young people who have a love for agriculture and rural life.

Led by young people, for young people, The National Young Farmers’ Clubs provide their 20,000 members with a unique opportunity to develop skills, work with their local communities, travel abroad, take part in a varied competitions programme and enjoy a dynamic social life.

Members of Shawbury Young Farmers Club in the 1930s or 1940s

Ruby Brooker, from the Shawbury YFC, said: "We are very proud of our club and its history. We are officially the oldest club in Shropshire.

"We have more than 50 members now which is really strong for the club. It hasn't been this big in quite a while now."

Shawbury YFC members in the 1950s

"Members of the club can be anything from 10-28 and the youngest we have at the moment is 13.

"We have quite a wide age gap and 80 per cent are from an agricultural background but not all are. We have members who came along with their friends and remained. I live on farm but don't do any farming at all."

Shawbury YFC members in the early 1980s

"We have members who are, for example, from the middle of Wellington and didn't come from a farming background but decided to go to college to study agriculture and now work on a farm.

"It brings lots of different people together and we do all sorts of things. We did axe-throwing this week and we do agricultural competitions, debating and arty-crafty events."

Shawbury YFC members in the 1950s

"It's great to be a part of the club. It brings friendship and communication and you learn to work as a team.

"I joined at 15 and my confidence grew so much with meeting new people, making friends with people of all ages and from all walks of life.

"We are always on the look out for new members and we are at more than 600 members across the county at the moment which is healthier than pre-Covid numbers."

Shawbury YFC members take part in activities in 1949

"Our motto is that you don't have to be a farmer to be a young farmer. It's just an easy way of meeting other young people."

Members pictured in the 1960s

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Shawbury YFC members in more recent times
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