FG Charity Gala raises £10,000-plus for RABI

IT was an ambitious task and an even bigger challenge, but the first ever Farmers Guardian Charity Gala Evening was held at the weekend and, as a sell-out event, raised thousands of pounds for the Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institute (RABI). Danusia Osiowy reports.

The Farmers Guardian Charity Gala Evening has raised more than £10,000 for one of farming’s main charities, the Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institute (RABI).

The ticket-only event welcomed more than 350 people to Rivington Hall Barn in Bolton, Lancashire, for an evening of entertainment, fun, food and music, raising a staggering amount along the way.

Kicking off the evening was Winmarleigh YFC with their hilarious rendition of the Village People’s YMCA, shortly followed by Samlesbury member, Harriet Gerrard, whose acoustic set played the audience up to the interval, where a traditional Lancashire hot-pot buffet was served.

After the buffet came well-known auctioneer Joe Worthington, who rattled through 20 auction lots and helped notch up another £3,000 for his efforts.

Next up to the stage were the Straight Outta Dorset boys, who were one of the finalists of our Tractor Factor competition.

Elliot Abbott, Ethan Taylor, Mungo Evans, Alex Watkinson, Rufus Brooks and Rufus Daw travelled hundreds of miles to perform their Tractor Factor entry, along with two other songs.

Welsh young farmers and this year’s Tractor Factor winners, Llion Vaughan and Richard Lewis, got the audience on their feet as they sang Plough On, their winning parody of Rihanna’s ‘S&M’.

Performing under the name of DJ Wooly feat Will.I.Lamb, the boys brought the house down with their cheeky and brilliantly song entry after Richard sang a Les Miserables classic - Empty Chairs and Empty Tables - to the packed barn.

Speaking to FG after the event, Llion said: “It was a really enjoyable evening and it was for a great cause. I’m looking forward to the next one.”

“The Tractor Factor competition generated some great acts and winning was a big surprise. I just want to say a thank you to everyone who voted for us. Sometimes I think other people know the words better than us!”

Rounding off the night were The Texels - a quintet representing Young Farmers from Shropshire. From The Beatles to Razorlight, the boys performed for 30 minutes and welcomed everybody on to the dance floor before handing over to the DJ to play them out until the early hours of the morning.

DJ and compere for the evening was Paul Dela Ross, whose vast experience in the music industry ensured he was the perfect host for the night.

Having started in the industry as a dancer, he has since worked with major artists, provides voice-overs for television and radio and has recently hosted the London Help for Hero’s gala night.

Georgina Lamb (pictured with Lionel Hill and Danusia Osiowy), RABI’s regional fundraising officer, said the event was the first of its kind to happen in the county and for the charity.

“It was an absolutely fantastic night and people are still ringing up to talk about it. All the money raised will go towards supporting the needs of each beneficiary. This could be quarterly grants towards household bills, adaptations and modification for people with mobility issues or relieve support on farms in times of need. It’s going to make a huge difference to people in the farming community.”

Danusia Osiowy, features editor of Farmers Guardian and co-organiser, was delighted with the support shown by those attending, from young farmers to families to those from farming businesses and positions of responsibility.

“I said at the beginning of this project, charity fundraising is a huge part of the farming industry and the way people pulled together to make the night happen is testament to this,” she said.

“Thank you to everyone who showed great spirit by getting involved and thank you to each and every person who bought a ticket and supported this flagship event. It exceeded our expectations.”

The charity auction

The auction was conducted by well-known livestock auctioneer Joe Worthington

  • Lot 1: One tonne of Lintec livestock feed, (BOCM Pauls)
  • Lot 2: One tonne of livestock feed, (I’Ansons)
  • Lot 3: £200 semen voucher from Cogent
  • Lot 4: 1/2 tonne of feed of coarse ration from South West Lancashire Farmers
  • Lot 5: Two bottles of Ecosyl 100 (Ecosyl)
  • Lot 6: £200 voucher for any Genus product or service (Genus)
  • Lot 7: A three-night weekend break for two at a luxury five-star Northumbrian beach cottage (www.northumerlandbeachcottages.co.uk)
  • Lot 8: An Overnight Gourmet Break at Northcote Manor (Nigel Haworth)
  • Lot 9: A charming escape for two at the Beaulieu Hotel, Hampshire (Farmers Guardian)
  • Lot 10: Two VIP tickets to the Great Yorkshire Show and dinner, plus bed and breakfast at a central hotel in Harrogate (Yorkshire Agricultural Society and Kara Rose PR)
  • Lot 11: A factory tour of JCB’s World HQ for two, an exclusive tour of The Story of JCB and lunch (JCB)
  • Lot 12: One day’s mixed shooting in North Wales (Jeremy Newton)
  • Lot 13: A Land Rover ‘all terrain adventure day’ for four (NFU)
  • Lot 14: Two tickets to the Sunday night Gala Evening Performance at the 2012 Horse of the Year Show (HOYS)
  • Lot 15: Four tickets to Haydock Races in the County Enclosure (Graham Young)
  • Lot 16: A Year’s Supply of Milk (www.evolutionconsulting.com)
  • Lot 17: A pet or animal portrait (Farmers Guardian)
  • Lot 18: Ladies Deerskin Gillet (www.hgv.co.uk)
  • Lot 19: Lune Valley Lancashire and Cumbria Food Hamper (www.lunevalleyhampers.com)
  • Lot 20: Four Seasonal Muddy Boots Hampers (www.muddybootsfoods.co.uk)

The event

Location: Rivington Hall Barn, Bolton
Date: Friday, November 11
Dress: Suits and sequins
Time: 7pm until late
Featuring: Lancashire Young Farmers, Tractor Factor finalists and winners, The Texels, a charity auction, luxury raffle, and host and DJ Paul Dela Ross

Supported by: Farmers Guardian, Carrs Billington, Harrison & Hetherington, Napthens Solicitors, Myerscough College, Yeo Valley Organics.


Readers' comments (1)

  • A totally amazing night raising money for a worthwhile cause. Thank you to everyone who supported, especially the FG crew!

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