Armagh Down members are clocking up the miles!

Members being greeted by Senator Ian Marshall
Members being greeted by Senator Ian Marshall

The Armagh Down Group of the Ulster Farmers’ Union have had a successful summer raising £1870 For the Northern Ireland Air Ambulance by holding a cyclothon.

Many thanks to all who contributed to and supported this event. The event was a great team effort with lots of volunteers jumping on the bikes.

The group had its annual trip in September when members headed to Joe Leonard’s dairy farm in Co. Meath. Joe runs a 600 herd jersey/Frisian cross dairy enterprise on a New Zealand-based system. There was a lot of interest in Joseph’s winter housing with the cows open to the elements with no roof on the cubicle housing.

For the second part of the trip members were kindly hosted at Leinster House Dublin by Senator Ian Marshall, who is an Armagh Down member and former UFU President. Members would like to wish Ian all the best for his new role and thank him for his hospitality on the visit.

For the first evening meeting of the winter programme Mr Conrad Ferris, from AFBI, spoke on the pros and cons of cross breeding in the dairy industry and gave an insight into trials that have been completed and are ongoing at AFBI.

The next meeting is scheduled for November 22 in the Mourne Country Hotel at 7.30pm. The speaker on the evening is UFU senior policy officer Mrs Aileen Lawson, who will be speaking about the effects of ammonia levels on the future of Northern Ireland farming. A good turnout would be greatly appreciated.