Winners of Young Craftsman of the Year 2013

Joel Robinson winner of YCYThe eagerly anticipated winner of this year’s Young Craftsman of the Year competition was announced at the South of England Show and  Joel Robinson from Plumpton College in East Sussex was delighted to accept his first prize from President, Penelope Keith CBE DL, for his stunning metal display table with glass top.

This unique competition, now in its twenty-sixth year, embraces two of the South of England Agricultural Society’s objectives, namely to promote crafts and skills and to encourage young people to extend themselves and produce work of the highest standard.

For the majority of visitors to the South of England Show, the Young Craftsman of the Year Pavilion is a “must see” exhibit showcasing the outstanding skill and creativity of young craftsmen, aged between 14 and 21, from across the region.  Each year the standard for the Young Craftsman Competition is remarkable and many of the previous winners have gone on to be successful entrepreneurs and business owners.

Penelope Keith also presented prizes to Frances Hooper from Imberhorne School in East Grinstead, West Sussex for overall 2nd place and 3rd place went to Samuel Brixley from the Camelia Botnar Foundation in Cowfold in West Sussex.

Sarah Peay, Committee Chairman for the Young Craftsman of the Year competition hosted proceedings and said that we received a record number of entries this year and that each year the standard just gets better and better. It is wonderful to see how many young talented people develop careers in these skills and the accolade of winning a prize in this competition can be an extremely helpful stepping stone and is highly regarded by employers.

The Young Craftsman of the Year Marquee is at the heart of the South of England Show, demonstrating skills and rural influences as well as diversity, technical expertise and the longevity of the craft teaching that is still being passed down through the generations.

RESULTS FOR 2013

Overall Winner – Joel Robinson from Plumpton College, Plumpton East Sussex – small metal display table with glass top

2nd place – Frances Hooper from Imberhorne School in East Grinstead, West Sussex – ‘Punk’ inspired frock coat in black with tartan lining and black lacing

3rd place – Samuel Brixley from Camelia Botnar Foundation, Cowfold, West Sussex – walnut coffee table tree design

OTHER RESULTS:

Wood Section

1st – Samuel Brixley, Camelia Botnar Foundation, Cowfold, West Sussex – walnut coffee table tree design

2nd – Russell Evans, Working from Home – four drawer unit made in cherry and ash

3rd – Thomas Streeter, Billingshurst School, West Sussex – natural edge bowl turned from ash

Metal Section

1st – Joel Robinson, Plumpton College, Plumpton, East Sussex – small metal display table with glass top

2nd – Aiden Beamish, Plumpton College, Plumpton, East Sussex – forged contemporary chair

3rd – Aiden Beamish, Plumpton College, Plumpton, East Sussex – silver and gold twist earrings with carved amber and matching pendant

Design & Technology

1st – Chayton Kent, Eastbourne College, Eastbourne, East Sussex – Violin display/storage system (hand veneered)

2nd – William Sutton, Sackville School, East Grinstead, West Sussex – Mood light in oak, Perspex and brass

3rd – Archie MacKellar, Eastbourne College, Eastbourne, West Sussex – multi purpose table with an inlaid autumn theme cast in resin and an aluminium inlay.

Ceramic Section

1st – Henry Williams from Storrington, West Sussex – a textured torso inspired by nature

2nd – Kitty Skinner, Eastbourne College, Eastbourne, East Sussex – slab built from inspired visits to the beach

3rd – Sophie Walters, Eastbourne College, Eastbourne, East Sussex – coil built vase form inspired by music, theatre and costume

Textiles Section

Joint 1st – Frances Hooper, Imberhorne School in East Grinstead, West Sussex – ‘Punk’ inspired frock coat in black with tartan lining and black lacing and Jordan Hill, Sackville School, East Grinstead, West Sussex – co-ordinated outfit, skirt and corset

3rd – Isabel Surtees, Sackville School, East Grinstead, West Sussex – a co-ordinated outfit based on 1910 corset and skirt.

SPECIAL AWARDS:

 Special prize awarded by the Worshipful Company of Joiners and Ceilers for the best piece of joinery – Russell Evans – wood section for his four drawer unit made in cherry and ash

Under 17 awards

Katherine Smith – Textiles section, Brighton inspired deckchair

Emily rose Usher – Textiles section, patchwork quilt

Kirkman – Textiles section, cushion

Joel McLaughlan – Wood section, coffee table

Jon Shoesmith – Wood section, oak corner cabinet

Highly Commended Entries (Prize Card Only)

Henry Williams – Wood section, Free hand steam bent chair made using New Forest Oak

Cameron Mark Smith – D & T section, 45mm gauge model railway carriages

Sam Phillips – Metal section, contemporary wall sculpture

Jake Souch – Metal section, small forged ‘wind’ sculpture

Karris Stewart – Metal section, coffee table

Charlie Whittingham – Metal section, contemporary tree design gate traditionally made

Shaun Donaghy – Jewellery

Daniel Bartlett – Jewellery

Jake Wilson – Jewellery

Thomas Pannell – Jewellery

Ryan Kluge – Jewellery

Katie Forster – Textiles

Kayley Anne Rointo – Textiles

Find out more at www.seas.org.uk.

Follow the Society on Facebook: ‘SouthofEnglandShowground’, Twitter @ sofeshowground


Town and country crowds flock to South of England Show

2013SS-F019 (640x427)Town and country came together with crowds of nearly 70,000 at this year’s South of England Show at Ardingly, celebrating the best of the region’s country life.

President of the Agricultural Society, Penelope Keith CBE DL, opened the show with the new World of Poultry exhibit, created by the Arun Valley Poultry Fanciers from Worthing, who also won Best Trade Exhibit for their display of poultry from across the world.

We were also delighted to host the micro-sized Shetland Grand National on Saturday [June 6], with young competitors racing for charity and crowds enjoying a wealth of spectacular displays in the four arenas including showjumping, Young Farmers Club tug of war, duck herding, Bolddog Lings motorcycle stunts and much more.

Every day, visitors were be able to see over 760 examples of beef and dairy cattle, sheep, pigs and goats on display and champions and owners alike had their moment of glory in the livestock parade which took place daily in the Ardingly ring. Nicholas Soames MP also opened public voting for the Sussex Food & Drink Awards 2013/14, seeking the county’s best food and drink businesses from plough to plate. You can vote now at www.sussexfoodawards.biz.

There was a pitch invasion of children running with the gentle giant foxhound packs in the Ardingly Ring on Saturday and the 150-acre showground was alive with hundreds of competitions, from best cattle, sheep, pig and goat breeds, to countryside skills, including  the Young Craftsman of the Year and the farriers’ horse shoeing competitions.

Penelope Keith, President of the South of England Agricultural Society, said “The show has been a huge success this year and we are thrilled with the support of people – from both town and country – for our region’s farmers and others in the rural industries.

“We all want to eat quality British food and enjoy our beautiful countryside so we need to support our agricultural community.  During the three days we have also enjoyed celebrating the great traditions of the country, some superb displays and performances, lots of fun and games and great shopping.”

Despite sunny weather forecasts, a freak thunderstorm and torrential rain hit the showground for two hours on Friday morning, though this did not deter the hardy showjumpers.  For the rest of the weekend the sun shone on the showground, helping attract thousands of people from across the South East as well as many international visitors.

Over 1,500 horses and ponies took part in the equestrian showcase that forms an enormous part of the three-day extravaganza. From the impressive heavy horse turnouts to the fast paced inter-hunt relay, spectacular show jumping to beautiful hackneys – there was something there for everyone.

Education echoed throughout the showground and is at the heart of the South of England Agricultural Society’s charity work, with the Knowledge Box for children, helping them learning about different animals and where their food comes from. Pupils from Bolnore Village Primary School, a Forest School, gave inspiring demonstrations of woodland conservation in the Round House in the Wildlife, Farming and Forestry.

We also want to thank our sponsors and over a thousand volunteers who helped make this year’s Show such a huge success – we couldn’t do it without you!

Find out more at www.seas.org.uk and vote in the Sussex Food & Drink Awards at www.sussexfoodawards.biz

Follow the Society on Facebook: ‘SouthofEnglandShowground’, Twitter @ sofeshowground


Farmers out in force at South of England Show

Penelope Keith with Ostrich eggDespite having faced the worst winter and spring weather on record, the strength of character of the farming community from across the South East is in evidence at this year’s South of England Show on 6, 7 & 8 June.

The quality of British husbandry and farming is superb and the South of England Show offers the opportunity for members of the public to come and see first hand the work and dedication of our farmers who continue to prove that ‘British is Best’.

Every day visitors will be able to see over 760 examples of beef & dairy cattle, sheep, pigs and goats on display and champions and owners alike will have their moment of glory in the livestock parade which takes place daily in the Ardingly ring.

As the Society’s chosen theme for 2013, Poultry is one of the central highlights of the show.  The official opening ceremony of the show took place at the new ‘World of Poultry’ exhibition by President of the Society, Penelope Keith CBE DL, who is a great advocate of growing local and owns her own chickens – she enjoyed meeting the team and seeing their huge egg collection!  She was joined by President of the NFU, Peter Kendall, Jane King, Editor of Farmers Weekly and Nicholas Soames MP.

This fascinating new exhibition focuses on domestic poultry keeping, which is currently seeing an explosion in popularity in both urban and rural areas.  Visitors can meet chicken breeds from ten countries, which live in the local area, as well as a large display of British breeds.

The new ‘World of Poultry’ exhibit is a great opportunity to focus on the great breeding and animal care we have in the UK, of which we should be proud, and we are delighted that Fred Hams and Andy Marshall, leading domestic poultry experts, will be with us to share their expertise with poultry enthusiasts and those who are considering keeping chickens for the first time. Domestic poultry keeping is increasingly providing the education link in urban communities for people to understand where their food comes from.

Over 1,500 horses and ponies are taking part in the equestrian showcase that forms an enormous part of the three-day extravaganza. From the impressive heavy horse turnouts to the fast paced inter-hunt relay, spectacular show jumping to beautiful hackneys – there is something for everyone.  Organisers are also delighted that the Shetland Grand National will be at this year’s show; many riders in this popular event have gone on to become successful professional jockeys.

The broad appeal of the show, however, hinges on a wide range of attractions outside the central agricultural and equestrian theme, including exciting displays such as daredevil stunts from Bolddog Lings Freestyle Motorcycle team, poultry herding in the main arena from Bob Hogg and his sheepdog and various competitions such as horse shoeing, flower arranging and the ever popular Young Craftsman of the Year competition.

Education is echoed throughout the showground and the Knowledge Box is an area for children and young people to learn about the countryside.  They can quiz the experienced stewards as well as take part in various activities including matching sounds of different kinds of fowl (ducks, guinea fowl, geese, pheasants and cockerel) to pictures, milking Buttercup the cow, listening to the Storyteller and contributing to the annual mural on the back of the marquee.

Children can also learn about where their food comes from in the NFU Meet the Farmer area. Cookery demonstrations and tastings will be available from local farmers and food producers as well as plenty of opportunities to meet farm animals and other small furry friends across the show ground.

Demonstrations on woodland conservation by pupils from Bolnore Village Primary School, a Forest School, are taking place in the Round House in the Wildlife, Farming and Forestry area as well as fly fishing and falcon flying.  On the ‘Village Green’ children are also able to enjoy a circus workshop, skittle alley and Zumba dancing.

The show offers entertainment, music and shopping galore for all the family and for foodies there is one of the most impressive food halls in the South East as well as a marquee dedicated to regional producers.

KeepOut is the President’s chosen charity for 2013 and is the first ever crime diversion scheme to be delivered by dedicated teams of serving prisoners – managed by civilian and seconded prison staff – inside UK prisons.  Prisoners are trained by KeepOut to run intervention programmes for young people that inform, support and divert those between 13 and 17 who are either at risk of entering the criminal justice system or are already involved in criminal activity.  A collection for KeepOut is being made during the daily cattle parades in the Ardingly Ring.

Gates open at 9.00am and close at 6.30pm daily. There is FREE parking at the show and a regular bus shuttle service available from Haywards Heath train station to the showground.

For details visit http://www.southofenglandshow.org.uk or telephone 01444 892700.

Follow the Society on Facebook: ‘SouthofEnglandShowground’, Twitter @ sofeshowground and read the Blog at SouthofEnglandShowground.


Bumper crop of livestock at this year’s South of England Show

ImageWe’re celebrating another bumper crop of livestock entries for this year’s South of England Show with 763 entries received in total including a record number of 98 pigs.  Many modern, traditional and commercial breeds will take part as well as Berkshire, British Lop, Gos, Large Black and nearly 30 examples of Oxford Sandy & Black and Saddleback.

The South of England Show, on Thursday 6th, Friday 7th and Saturday 8th June, is our  flagship event and the biggest show of its kind in the region.  Central to the three-day extravaganza is British rural life, farming and prize -winning British livestock that can be seen parading in the main arena every day.

Some of the country’s finest specimens of dairy & beef cattle, sheep, pigs and goats will be on display and competing for the coveted first prize in order to go on for the chance to be crowned champion of champions.  For the past 46 years the show has offered the farming community an opportunity to celebrate all that is great about the livestock and produce that is still being created in this country.

President of the South of England Agricultural Society, Penelope Keith CBE DL, will also be bringing her very own slice of the ‘Good Life’ to this year’s show by opening an exciting exhibition dedicated to the Society’s 2013 theme, ‘Poultry’.

The nation’s favourite feathered friends including chickens, ducks and geese will waddle into the spotlight for this year’s show and the Feather and Fur marquee will move to a more central position with the new ‘World of Poultry’ exhibition where several rare breeds will be on show for the first time including Sulmtalers, Thuringians and Appenzellers.

The main objective of the show is to promote the agriculture industry and to advance education, particularly in agriculture and allied industries, animal husbandry, horticulture and forestry.  World class show jumping and equestrian events also feature heavily throughout the three days.

The broad appeal of the show, however, hinges on a wide range of attractions outside the central agricultural and equestrian theme, including exciting displays such as daredevil stunts from Bolddog Lings Freestyle Motorcycle team, poultry herding in the main arena from Bob Hogg and his sheepdog and the Shetland Grand National which makes a popular return this year.

More than 1,000 volunteers play a vital role in helping to run the show, many of who return year on year just to assist with jobs over the three days and the number of trade stands has increased from 185 in 1967 when the first show took place to more than 500 this year.

We are very excited about this year’s show where visitors will be able to experience the very best in British agriculture, equestrianism, horticulture, food and drink and country crafts.  As well as our ‘World of Poultry’ exhibition there will be all sorts of fun and educational activities featured across the showground highlighting this year’s theme of poultry.

Children will be able to learn about where their food comes from in the NFU Meet the Farmer area. Cookery demonstrations and tastings will be available from local farmers and food producers as well as the opportunity to meet farm animals.

Demonstrations on woodland conservation by pupils from Bolnore Village Primary School, a Forest School, in the Round House in the Wildlife, Farming and Forestry area will be taking place as well as fly fishing and falcon flying.  On the ‘Village Green’ children will also be able to enjoy a circus workshop, skittle alley and Zumba dancing.

The show offers entertainment, music and shopping galore for all the family and for foodies there is one of the most impressive food halls in the South East as well as a marquee dedicated to regional producers.

Gates open at 9.00am and close at 6.30pm daily. There is FREE parking at the show and a regular bus shuttle service available from Haywards Heath train station to the showground.

For advance ticket discounts and full details visit www.southofenglandshow.org.uk or telephone 01444 892700.

Follow us on Facebook at ‘SouthofEnglandShowground’ or Twitter @ sofeshowground


SUNNY SUCCESS AT SPRING GARDEN AND LEISURE SHOW

SGLS13 S0072 (333x500)Thanks to all our helpers and the glorious sunshine at the Spring Garden & Leisure Show over 15,000 people came to enjoy all the fun and games at the Showground this weekend.

The South of England Agricultural Society’s theme for this year is ‘Poultry’ and President, Penelope Keith CBE DL, got up close and personal with various feathered friends during her first visit to the Spring Show.  She will be making a welcome return in just over four weeks to officially open the South of England Show on the 6-8 June at an exciting new ‘World of Poultry’ exhibition.

A fully packed audience listened to vet and poultry expert, Martin Smith, and Agricultural Consultant, Andrew Marshall, who held free talks about Healthy Hens/Happy Hens throughout the two days in the new ‘Poultry Theatre’.

The ‘Gardening Theatre’ was another success this year, as gardening enthusiasts quizzed BBC gardening expert, Jean Griffin, and the rest of the expert gardening panel about everything flora related.  Trade stands were also extra busy throughout the weekend as people rushed to get the best deals on offer and make the most of late Spring planting.

Clare Hastings, Chairman of the Spring Show Committee was delighted with the turnout, saying that it was a great success for both traders and visitors who thoroughly enjoyed basking in the sunshine – it really felt like Spring had finally arrived and is a fantastic start to the show season here at Ardingly.

Hundreds of children enjoyed the cattle, sheep and pig workshops in the ‘Access the Countryside’ area and took part in the fluffy duck trail.  The famous Mini ‘Sheep Show’ team with live sheep shearing on stage proved as popular as ever drawing in huge crowds from across the showground.

Over 700 dogs from across the region competed in the ever popular Open Dog Show which forms an integral part of the Spring Garden & Leisure Show and many came to see who would be crowned Best in Show.  This year the title went to the impressive Newfoundland, Zentaur Tee Tea Effen from Salfords in Surrey and Best Puppy in Show went to Akita, Darquenny from Kingsnorth in Kent, qualifying both to compete against the world’s best at Crufts.

Celebrations were also heard from the Alpaca marquee when Houghton Perry won the Huacaya Supreme Championship and Houghton Chance won Suri Supreme Championship. Hundreds of these fascinating long-haired camelids from South America competed at the show and once again proved hugely popular with children and adults alike.

The new showground caterers delivered tempting and delicious food that was thoroughly enjoyed by the crowds who gathered on the grassy banks and picnic areas across the showground; and the food hall enjoyed a fantastic weekend as visitors stocked up on freshly prepared seafood, pies, pasties, fresh bread, cheeses and fresh strawberries as well as many other tasty treats.

There was also entertainment from the steel band made up of children from Cleaves School in Weybridge and ex Cleaves players plus the Langton Green Super Band; and many other bands could be heard across the showground as they performed live on the Sussex Rok School stage.

Also back by popular demand and taking centre stage, literally, as they landed and took off in the main ring, was the Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance crew who were able to offer a very special insight into how they work and gave visitors the opportunity to look over a fully equipped helicopter.

A welcome sunny success for the South of England Agricultural Society and all the volunteers who helped organise the first show of the season and just the start of what is yet to come.  To book advance tickets and for more information on the South of England and all other shows and events taking place at the showground call 01444 892700 or visit www.seas.org.uk

You can also Follow us on Facebook: SouthofEnglandShowground, Twitter @ sofeshowground


Winners revealed for South of England Agricultural Society University partnership

From left to right Lucy Atkinson, Bradley McManus, Fiona Malcolm, Lucy Cannings, Juliet Avery, Stephen Harris

Cultivate has been announced as the winning team for the re-branding partnership between The South of England Agricultural Society and the University of Brighton. The winning agency was unveiled at an exclusive showcase at the South of England Show. Cultivates designs will be used for a set of new society show logos.

The South of England Agricultural Society teamed up with the University of Brighton to offer marketing students the opportunity to work on a real-life campaign for a prestigious client. The partnership provided a re-branding exercise for the South of England Agricultural Society’s four main shows; The Spring Garden and Leisure Show, The South of England Show, The Autumn Show & Game Fair and The Festive Food and Drink Fayre.

The initiative provided real life experience to enhance the students’ employability prospects. Fiona Malcolm, Commercial and Marketing Director of The South of England Agricultural Society explains, “Supporting educational projects is part of the Society’s ethos and what better way to achieve this than involving students in a re-branding project. I ensured that the students were offered full support from the Society throughout the scheme and provided a full brief for the re-branding. All the groups worked incredibly hard and their talent was incredible. The winning group displayed incredible passion for the task and best understood the brief.  They maintained the heritage and ethos of the Society whilst giving a modern, fresh image.” 

As part of the project, the students split into four groups and acted as their own advertising and design agency. Each group was tasked with pulling together ideas and mock ups of the four re-designed logos and presenting them as workable material across a range of collateral. They then presented their ideas in May 2012 to a panel made up of members from the University and the Society. The panel judged the work based on the brief on which the students were given, which was to reflect the heritage of the society in a modern way whilst reflecting the activities and ethos of each show.

Lyvia Royd-Taylor, Senior Lecturer at the University of Brighton, said: “The competition has been a fantastic experience for our students. It has given them the opportunity to apply their marketing knowledge a real-life scenario, and has helped them develop practical skills such as team working, problem solving and leadership. Re-branding a nationally-renowned show can only enhance their learning experience and have a positive impact on their future career.”


Jubilee spirit reigns supreme as South of England Showgoers beat weather blues

The Young Craftsman of the Year winners.  Left to right: Kayley Anne Rainton from Burgess Hill School; Jack Lasnon from Camelia Botnar; and Barnabas Cheeseman from Plumpton College.

A HUGE thank-you to the tens of thousands who supported this year’s South of England Show despite some of the most atrocious summer weather on record.

While other events fell foul to the gale-force winds and torrential rain, attendance at the three-day show in Ardingly was only slightly dented. Show-goers proved they were made of sterner stuff, even though heavy rain and strong winds threatened on Thursday afternoon and continued all day on Friday. The total attendance ended at a respectable 65,569.

Thankfully, by Saturday, clearing skies and sunshine returned to the South of England Showground and people flocked to see the flagship Show’s arena attractions, the pride of British livestock, entertainment for all ages and avenues of farming and countryside exhibits, as well as retail stands including the best of regional food and wine producers.

The sort of fortitude we have seen of everything the weather has been able to throw at us, is a great testament to the supporters who come to the South of England Show year after year. What we have seen here in the last three days has been similar to the stoicism we saw at the Diamond Jubilee; people have carried on regardless of the prevailing weather. The atmosphere has been as bright and enjoyable as ever.

Visitors enjoyed the daily parades of prize-winning livestock and cavalcade of hounds, the death-defying swaypole artist Jean Monti 185-feet in the air, and the daredevil, airbourne Bolddog Lings Freestyle motorcycle team.

Day one saw the Show opened by record-breaking former Olympian, Sally Gunnell OBE, watched by government minister Richard Benyon and a collection of budding young sports boys and girls from local schools.   On the final day the loyal crowds got an extra surprise when a marriage proposal was made in the Ardingly Ring by love-smitten Nathan Evans, who borrowed a cow to carry his romantic message to his girlfriend Angela Olano from Berkshire.   Also on Saturday, the President’s Trophy was awarded by Mrs James Teacher to long-serving Council Member and Chairman of the Horticultural Committee, Brian Jeffries from Felbridge.

There was a record number of livestock entries at this year’s Show with the introduction of the first National Southdown Sheep Show and the popular pigs, goats, sheep, cattle, poultry, show jumpers and Shire horses. Unfortunately, show jumping on Friday was cancelled due to high winds and on the last day due to ground conditions.

Another of the undoubted highlights was the Young Craftsman of the Year competition which celebrated its 25th anniversary.  18-year old Jack Lasnon from Camelia Botnar at Cowfold took the coveted title with his two-part oak garden chair, described by judges as near perfection as possible.  Four of the previous title holders came back for the celebration and it was particularly gratifying to hear their success stories and demonstrations of their current skills.

Our Show firmly places British agriculture on the map and encourages young people into the industry. We see it as a magnificent celebration of rural life combining the best of agriculture with the finest entertainment.

We are delighted to record another successful Show, particularly when other organisations had the misfortune to cancel or shorten their events.  Our army of officials, show services & contractors, volunteers and stewards worked miracles to ensure our Show has been enjoyed by all our supporters.

Next year’s event is scheduled for 6 to 8 June, meanwhile the agricultural society is busy planning for the Autumn Show and Game Fair which takes place at Ardingly on 6 and 7  October.


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