Young Farmers profile: How horses, polo and Fiona Bruce helped inspire 21-year-old equestrian entrepreneur
- Credit: Lorraine Porter
As part of our regular series of profiles on the region's Young Farmers' Club members, 21-year-old AMY LUKINS explains how her equestrian passions led her to take the reins of her own saddlery and country clothing firm.
I joined YFC shortly after I got back from six months in Australia. For the past three years after finishing college, I have worked all round the country as a polo groom.
This was the most amazing fun, and allowed me to travel to Australia to groom, play and do a bit of cattle mustering as well.
My claim to fame is playing matches against 'Mr Croc' (the man who gave us the infamous Croc) and having regular chats with Fiona Bruce, who kept her horse at one of the yards where I was based.
After finishing my travels, I found myself back in Norfolk and needing a new challenge. I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to jointly open my business with a great friend of mine.
I never thought I would ever be cut out for retail, but me and Kim (my business partner) have taken to it like ducks to water. Running Marsham Saddlery and Country Clothing means every day presents a new challenge, whether it is dealing with difficult delivery companies, malfunctioning card machines – or realising we have run out of choccy biscuits.
Eventing my horses is a huge part of my life. I hope to compete at Houghton International Horse Trials in the spring – look out for the light blue North Norfolk sleeves, that's me.
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Next year I hope to do my HGV test so I can drive my horse lorry, and a trailer test so I can do feed deliveries for the saddlery. In the next five years I hope to expand Marsham Saddlery and Country Clothing – not that I want to give too much of the top secret plans away.
For me, YFC has given me a voice. I love feeling part of something, and having the support from like-minded people. I have grown in confidence – I used to feel very out of my comfort zone talking to new people, but during my time with YFC they have brought me out of my shell. They struggle to shut me up now.
YFC has given me a very active social calendar, firm friendships and a lot of fun. I can't wait for dinner dance season to start. Who doesn't love putting on a bit of make up and a posh frock and having a good dance... even if the only move you know is the 'dad dance'.
I hope to have many more years involved with YFC,and might even make club chairlady one day, who knows?
Name: Amy Lukins
Occupation: Owner and director of Marsham Saddlery and Country Clothing
YFC Club: North Elmham
How long have you been a YFC member?: Since April 2018
• North Elmham YFC meets on Wednesday evenings at the Railway Arms, North Elmham. For more details about Norfolk Young Farmers contact the county office on 01603 731307.