Carlisle auctioneer wins top graduating student award at high-level Harper Adams course

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On 11th January 2016, the 11 of the 41 students of the Livestock Market Operations and Management course at Harper Adams University celebrated their graduation ceremony, with Carlisle-based young auctioneer, John Helme winning the top graduating student award.

John, who works for Harrison and Hetherington, Carlisle, comments: “The course was great, it made me appreciate the whole industry including EU directives and their impacts, finance and balance sheets and more generally about how trends can affect the auction industry.

“The course was great, it made me appreciate the whole industry including EU directives and their impacts, finance and balance sheets and more generally about how trends can affect the auction industry.”

John Helme

“Most importantly, the course put a great deal of emphasis on animal health and welfare legislation and health and safety. It helped us to further understand the importance of high welfare standards and how to implement best practice within livestock markets, including drover-training, which resulted in us all having a greater understanding of how the auction mart really is the best place for animals to be bought and sold, for both financial and welfare reasons.”

Sponsored by the Livestock Auctioneers Association (LAA), the course has run since 2011 at Harper Adams, attracting more students every year. The University awarded the Harper Adams University Certificate of Higher Education in Professional Studies, Livestock Market Operations and Management, as well as fellowships of the Livestock Auctioneers Association and the Institute of Auctioneers and Appraisers in Scotland (IAAS).

Topics covered on the course include: animal welfare and health in the livestock market, market operational management, law and tax for the livestock auctioneer, valuations and supply chain relationships and preparing students for a career in the livestock auctioneering and handling industries.

Mark Simcock, Associate Head of Department for Land Management at Harper Adams University, who runs the course comments: “John is a real talent in his field. He goes a long way to show how the livestock industry is as important today as it has ever been and that new generations of auctioneers are coming into their own in the marketplace.

“The course has been incredibly popular with students already working in livestock marketing businesses. It has gone a long way to fulfil a gap for professional recognition in the industry and improve standards of auctioneering across the UK. The sponsorship from the LAA has meant that we can provide the best of facilities and education for everyone on the course.”

Chris Dodds, Executive Secretary of the LAA comments: “At the LAA we would like to congratulate John and all of the other students for successfully graduating from the course at Harper Adams.

“As an organisation, it is always our aim to provide the highest of standards in welfare for livestock at auction marts.

“By educating potential auctioneers with training in welfare, droving and operational management, we can continue to improve the efficiency and standards of auction marts across the UK. We are pleased to welcome these graduates into the LAA and the IAAS and look forward to supporting them in their careers.”

More information on the course can be found at: http://www.harper-adams.ac.uk/short-courses/201010/livestock-market-operations-and-management.