Young farmers are cycling torchbearers for 2012 path
MORE THAN 70 young members cycled hundreds of miles on their way to this year's National Federation of Young Farmers' Clubs annual convention.
They were among more than 100 people from the Cornwall Federation of Young Farmers' Clubs (YFC) who made it to the convention in Torquay.
The event attracted some controversy after a 7ft plastic dinosaur was hurled into the harbour in a drunken prank.
But the lasting legacy of Cornwall's participation in the convention will be the thousands of pounds raised for a leading cancer care charity.
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Cornwall YFC was also rewarded once more for its fundraising work over the year and received a special trophy.
The weekend attracted 4,500 young farmer members from all over the country and consisted of three days of competitions and discos as well as the annual general meeting.
The fundraising bicycle ride from Cornwall was nicknamed the Wotnot and started in Royal Tonbridge Wells where members got on their bikes and embarked on their 400-mile expedition.
Averaging 60 miles a day the team followed the route that the Olympic Torch will take along the south coast later this month which included crossing to the Isle of Wight and cycling to the tip of Portland near Weymouth.
The group, who hope to have raised £7,000 for Macmillan Cancer Support, arrived in Torquay on April 27 and were welcomed by fellow members of Cornwall YFC as well as other young farmers from all around England and Wales.
County chairman William Dymond was very pleased with the efforts of the members.
He said: "It has been a hard week with at times very challenging weather.
"At one point the headwind was so strong we had to pedal hard downhill.
"I am so proud of every member that took on the challenge and I hope that when the sponsorship is collected we will have raised a good amount for Macmillan."
The annual general meeting of the national federation was presided over by president Matt Baker.
Cornwall YFC was thrilled to find out that they had been awarded the Prince of Wales cup which is awarded to the county that raises the most amount of money for charity per member.
The Cornwall delegation picked up the trophy after having raised £53,000 during the previous 12 months.
Cornwall has won the trophy seven times in nine years.
Last year's county chairman, Anthony Ellis, said: "Cornwall YFC has a long and proud history of raising money for local charities and it is an honour to once again collect the Prince of Wales trophy."