Welsh farmers recognised with top awards

Some of Wales’ top farmers were recognised today (29 November) for their exceptional skills at the Welsh Land-based Learner of the Year Awards held at the Winter Fair in Builth Wells.

29 November 2010 PR 1469 The awards were organised by Lantra Sector Skills Council and presented by MP for Brecon and Radnor and spokesman for agriculture and rural affairs, Roger Williams, who said: “I’m delighted to support these awards, organised by Lantra, and to celebrate the achievements demonstrated here today. I hope the winners not only inspire other individuals to start a career in the sector but encourage everyone working in environmental and land-based industries to keep their skills up-to-date. “These awards recognise the excellent skills we have within the environmental and land-based industries of Wales. The individuals we saw here today demonstrate how learning and skills can be applied to great effect – developing rewarding careers; helping businesses to thrive and grow – contributing to the sustainability of rural Wales.” Picking up their awards at the prestigious event were Robert John, who won the Young Land-based Learner of the Year in land management and production and David Horman who was awarded the Farming Connect Learner of the Year, both of which received £200 and a Welsh crystal paper weight. Robert, a farmer and partner of the family dairy farm in Pembroke, said: “Having grown up in agriculture I’ve always wanted to follow in my parents footsteps. By completing relevant training and attending college it has given me the chance to become the best farmer that I can and become a partner in the family business.” David, a beef and sheep farmer at Fan Farm in Llandovery, has accessed 80% funding from the Farming Connect Skills Development Programme to go on training courses that have helped him to develop his business. David has now added forestry management and a shoot business to his farm. David said: “You should never stop learning in life as you always have to prepare for change and new challenges in work.” Two dairy farmers also picked up runner up awards and £100 in the land-management and production category. Euros Evans from Newcastle Emlyn was awarded with Life Long Learner of the Year runner up and Sam Carey, from Cardigan, was Young Learner of the Year runner up. Ellis Owen Griffith from Pwllheli and Robat Evans from Betwes Y Coed also received Certificates of Achievement. The Welsh Land-based Learner of the Year Awards are sponsored by Farming Connect, DCELLS, Welsh Assembly Government, NFU Cymru, Countryside Council for Wales and Farmers Union Wales. To view pictures from the ceremony and to find out more about the awards visit www.lantra.co.uk/land-based-learner-wales. -ENDS- ISSUED BY: Vicky Brewin, Lantra Press Office – contact wales.media@lantra.co.uk or call 02476 858 417. PHOTOS AVAILABLE ON REQUEST – Available after 2pm on Monday 29 November NOTES TO EDITOR: About the Land-based Learner of the Year Awards Lantra’s Land-based Learner of the Year Awards recognises those in the land-based and environmental industries that are committed to improving their skills and who strive for excellence within the 17 industries Lantra represents. The awards are split into two categories where there is a Young Land-based Learner and Lifelong Learner for each. The categories are: Land management and production - agriculture, aquaculture, fisheries management, land-based engineering, trees and timber and fencing Animal health and welfare and environmental industries - animal care, animal technology, equine, farriery, veterinary activities, game and wildlife management, environmental conservation, production horticulture, horticulture, landscaping and sports turf and floristry Winners Farming Connect Learner of the Year Award Winner - David Horman, mixed farmer from Llandovery, Carmarthenshire Land Management and Production Young Land-based Learner of the Year Winner – Robert John, dairy farmer from Pembroke Land Management and Production Young Land-based Learner of the Year Runner Up – Sam Carey, dairy farmer from Cardigan, Pembrokeshire Land Management and Production Lifelong Land-based Learner of the Year Winner – Caroline Riches at the Forestry Commission from Resolven, Neath Land Management and Production Lifelong Land-based Learner of the Year Runner Up – Euros Evans, Dairy farmer from Newcastle Emlyn, Ceredigion Animal Health and Welfare and Environmental Industries Young Land-based Learner of the Year Winner – Gethin Crewdson, working in environmental conservation from Welshpool, Powys Animal Health and Welfare and Environmental Industries Young Land-based Learner of the Year Runner Up – Alicia Dawson, working in animal care, from Benllech, Anglesey Animal Health and Welfare and Environmental Industries Lifelong Land-based Learner Winner – Moya Nicolaysen, working in equine, from Henllan, Llandysul Animal Health and Welfare and Environmental Industries Young Land-based Learner of the Year Runner Up – Iestyn Thomas, working in environmental conservation, from Guilsfield, Welshpool. About Lantra Lantra is the Sector Skills Council for land-based and environmental industries, working to ensure these businesses access the training, qualifications, skills and knowledge they need. An independent UK organisation, Lantra works with employers and the UK’s governments to address the skills and productivity needs of approximately 230 businesses (one in every ten UK businesses) in: agriculture; animal care; animal technology; aquaculture; environmental conservation; equine; farriery; fencing; fisheries management; floristry; game and wildlife management; land-based engineering; horticulture, landscape and sports turf; production horticulture; trees and timber and veterinary nursing. By working together with the sector, Lantra leads research on skills issues and business needs, sets national standards and develops qualifications to meet modern business needs and help businesses grow through skills. For more information see www.lantra.co.uk.

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