Charolais Club reflects on a year of success

Sponsor for Northern Ireland  Charolais Club AGM Walmsley Bell Tractors Ltd
Sponsor for Northern Ireland Charolais Club AGM Walmsley Bell Tractors Ltd

The Northern Ireland Charolais Club AGM was held in Quinn’s Corner, Ballygawley on March 7.

Acting chairman Mr Ian Balfour welcomed members and thanked all the sponsors who have financially supported the club events over the past year.

Representative from Brain Injury  matters and Trevor Phair of NICC

Representative from Brain Injury matters and Trevor Phair of NICC

Club members were introduced to new secretary Mrs Eilis Kelly, Pomeroy, Tyrone.

The club charity of the year was ‘Brain Injury Matters’ who were presented with a cheque for £2,500 proceeds from the ‘Nite at the Races’. Another cheque for £650 was presented to ‘Omagh Down Syndrome Group’ two very worthy charities.

An e-mail message had been received from British Charolais Chief Executive Mr David Benson who is retiring after 29 years. David thanked the Northern Ireland Charolais Club for the wonderful gift presented to him in Dungannon Farmers Mart on the 3rd of March at the Show & Sale. He wished the club good fortune for the future – may Charolais cattle go from strength to strength.

Ian’s annual report gave a flavour of events over the past year. Outlining the success of sales and especially congratulating the young breeders who represented Northern Ireland at the youth stock Judging Finals at NEC in July. 2016 was a special year when Northern Ireland youth took home all the silverware from UK finals.

David Mitchell from Down Syndrome  Support Group with Will Short and Eilis Kelly (NICC secretary)

David Mitchell from Down Syndrome Support Group with Will Short and Eilis Kelly (NICC secretary)

Treasurer Trevor Phair outlined his report on the past financial year showing that sponsorship was up and sales where well up because of the demand of the Charolais breed.

A number of new members had joined the club and this was to be encouraged. Membership by standing order is £20 or cash payment annually £30.

Exciting new venture for 2017 - The NI Charolais Herd Competition was launched with six new companies on board with generous sponsorship on a county basis: Heron Feeds, SAFE, Nugent Trailers, Top Stock, Swatragh Mart and Bank of Ireland. Application forms available from the Secretary at eiliskelly@btinternet.com. Applications close on April 30, 2017.

Next Charolais Club Show & Sale is on the 1st of May in Dungannon sponsored by Moore Concrete Ballymena.

Northern Ireland Youth stock judging and youth workshop will be hosted this year by Robert McWilliams & Family on the 6th May at 48 Drumbane Rd, Maghera, Londonderry, BT46 5NR at 2pm. This event is kindly sponsored by Bovipast (RSP)

After the business was dealt with Ian introduced the speaker for the evening Ms Claire Holmes (AFBI)

Claire gave a presentation on the Cattle Health Scheme and on the risks of the four main diseases.

There was great audience participation and plenty of questions from the floor.

Ian thanked Claire for coming to speak to the members and she was presented with a bouquet of flowers.

New committee members elected – Aaron Quigley and David Bothwell Fermanagh.

Office Bearers for 2017: Chairman David Connolly, Ballynahinch; Vice Chair Ian Balfour, Bellaneleck; Treasurer Trevor Phair, Florencecourt; PRO Robert McWilliams, Maghera; Youth Co-ordinator Clodagh McGovern, Clogher; TB Stakeholders Group Will Short, Beragh

Ian closed the AGM by thanking all the sponsors and asked that members all give them their support. He thanked the outgoing committee members for their hard work and dedication. He thanked Ann Orr, theprevious secretary, and congratulated her on her BEM award.

He thanked Tanya Hamill who filled in as interim secretary until Eilis was appointed. He thanked the judges, stewards, breeders, and exhibitor without whom this year would not be a success. Thanks where given to Quinn’s Corner for their hospitality for the year.

He sent get well wishes to Mr David Connolly and Mr Sean McGovern and wished them both a speedy recovery.