National Federation of Young Farmers' Clubs

Fun, Learning, and Achievement

28 March 2019

How do you secure a club meeting space for future generations? Buy the land your club hall is on, say Threemilestone YFC!  Natalie Brown, Social Media and Communications Officer for the 72-year-old Club, reveals all about their £52k challenge.

Why does your club want to buy the site where your club house is based?

This has been our home for 57 years and the Club has seen generations of YFC members have fun here and it’s at the root of our club and it’s history. The site is situated in a prime location and is local to the Threemilestone and District surroundings, which forms the name of our club and it’s in the heart of the community.

How much money do you need to raise? 

The total amount we need to raise is £52,000.

Have you got a deadline by which you need to raise the funds?

The club aims to raise this within three years from the start date. The hope is that by December 2022 the club will own the land and the club hall.

What plans have you got to raise the funds?

As well as writing letters to current and former members to ask for donations to the campaign, we officially launched in January 2019 with a tea party for generations of members to give donations.

So far we have held a comedy night with more than 100 people joining us and a coast-to-coast tractor run with 65 new and vintage tractors.

Future events include an Auction of Promises with 100 lots donated by individuals, local and national companies. These will be auctioned off by local auctioneer Ed Harris from Lodge and Thomas at Griggs restaurant on Friday 5 April at 7:30pm.

We are also planning a murder mystery evening and an annual clay pigeon shoot as well as hiring out our bar and bar staff for functions.

We have introduced a supporters draw too so that supporters have a chance to win back some money with 50% of the pot being donated back to the club and 50% to be shared between three winners in each quarterly draw.

The club members are very keen to actively work on events and put the effort in to raising the funds. The club treasurer is also looking to identify any potential grants or community schemes that we may be able to access. 

Is your club house owned by your club and how did you go about purchasing this? 

Club Chairman Andrew Oatey in May 1958 recognised the club was thriving and was becoming too big for the local school classroom. In July 16th 1960 the club purchased the club hall costing £200 from the Fire Station at RAF St Eval after it was facing closure. It took the members 10 weeks and 15 lorry loads to safely dismantle the building and transfer it to its new home. The Queen Mother visited the hall on Wednesday 25th April 1962 to officially open the Hall and give it the Royal blessing. The same day the Tamar bridge was opened.

What's it like inside and what makes it special?

The club hall comprises male and female toilets, a kitchen, a large hall and a staged area. The walls are a mix of blue and white with a wooden floor. The original wooden beams are a real feature of the roof. The toilets are rather dated and will be improved in the future.

Local firm Howdens donated a brand new kitchen to us which was fitted by three club members Ben Brown, Andy Holden and Toby Rickard in 2012. The hall is regularly painted and maintained by the members.

Why would you recommend other YFCs consider having their own building and land?

We have been extremely lucky to have our own club house. It’s not just our club that has benefited it has been widely used by other clubs and the county team as we are the only club in Cornwall with our own Club Hall.

Local community spaces can be rare to find and book for regular club night meetings and the cost of this is ongoing. The club hall provides us with a home and hub for all our activities, including home for cubicle when it comes to Royal Cornwall Show time.

Having your own club hall does not come without some challenges but the sense of pride of the building being your own really does make it something special.

Has everyone in the club got a role to help raise the funds?

It really is a team effort as all current members voted unanimously in 2018 to purchase the land. Club members past and present help to run and organise events and also attend to support and have fun. The club members are vital for helping with the success of the campaign.

With a thriving club and not underestimating the challenges the club were going to have ahead of them over the next few years a separate Fundraising For Our Future team was created.

This team consists of Chairman Toby Rickard a previous club chairman, Secretary Julia Burley current club leader, myself and Treasurer Lucy Rafferty the clubs current Treasurer.   

Has it helped bring the club together?

The club is thriving more than ever with a large intake of younger members which is fantastic to see as part of securing the future of the club.

With a wide range of activities and calendar of events for the campaign it really has brought the club together and younger members have heard from past members and their stories.

With rural isolation and mental health being high on the agenda it’s fantastic to see the club pull along with the local community. 


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