Young Farmers profile: How 22-year-old Thomas Bryant was inspired to become a butcher
As part of our regular series of profiles on the region's Young Farmers' Club members, 22-year-old butcher THOMAS BRYANT explains how a club visit as a child inspired his future career choices.
I am a hard-working full-time butcher in Hingham as well as a part-time firewood merchant and an active member of Dereham Young Farmers.
I attended Wymondham High School and I was a member of Wymondham Countrysiders, a junior Young Farmers Club for 10 to 16-year-olds.
The experiences at Countrysiders were vast and varied and were really rewarding. I learned a lot about myself.
It was with Countrysiders that I went to Poultec, a training venue at South Green in Mattishall. This particular evening meeting was an "introduction to butchery" and I was really inspired. I decided to follow my instincts and applied for a job at a butcher's shop in Hingham, working for Barry Drewery.
Following high school, due to the fact I couldn't get a full time job at the butcher's, I attended Easton College. I completed a year-and-a-half Level 2 diploma course in livestock production. This decision has been really beneficial to my butchery career, as by the time I finished the course I was offered a full-time job at the butchery. The rest, as they say, is history.
I set up the firewood business after speaking to customers in the butcher's. I realised there was a gap in the local area for supplying split seasoned hardwood. So, I bought a heavy-duty chopping axe, as well as borrowing my dad's chainsaw. I was able to source the wood from a close friend who is in the forestry business.
The busiest time of year for the butcher's shop and for the supply of logs is during the winter especially at Christmas. I can work anything up to 17 hours a day during this busy period so having the support of family, friends and Dereham Young Farmers means that I have a good work-life balance.
Thinking ahead and for the future, I would like to use the Young Farmers Skills Initiative Fund to get my trailer test, which will allow multiple wood deliveries on the same day, which will be a more efficient use of my time and mileage.
Name: Thomas Bryant
Occupation: Full time butcher, part time firewood merchant
YFC Club: Dereham
- Dereham YFC meets at The Flying Club in Shipdham on Tuesday evenings. For more details about Norfolk Young Farmers contact the county office on 01603 731307.