Young Farmers profile: How Matthew Davey, 26, trained for a varied rural career
- Credit: Sara McCarthy
As part of our regular series of profiles on the region's Young Farmers' Club members, 26-year-old Matthew Davey explains the education and training journey which led him into a diverse farming career.
As I left my school days behind, I made the leap into boarding at Easton College to study a diploma in agriculture.
In 2013, I headed to the Cotswolds where I was to spend the next four years of my life at the Royal Agricultural University. I studied agricultural management and subsequently, after completing a harvest on an arable farm in Kent, went on to complete a masters in rural land management.
After completing my studies, I was lucky enough to secure a job as a graduate rural surveyor with Arnolds Keys - Irelands Agricultural. This is a busy and diverse role and gives me exposure to a wide range of agricultural and rural property matters. I predominantly assist three rural surveyors with valuations, sales and lettings, estate management and farm machinery auctions. I even had my first go at auctioning around 100 lots of miscellaneous items at a machinery auction last December.
I am currently enrolled on a training programme, the Assessment of Professional Competence (APC) which is governed by the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS). I intend to take my final exam this coming autumn.
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I love the variety that this job offers - a typical week comprises overseeing a cottage refurbishment, inspecting farm machinery and equipment for auction, assisting with the valuation of an arable farm and preparing a compensation claim to calculate crop loss.
My passion is agriculture and I have always had an ambition to keep my own livestock. I recently started my own venture rearing pedigree Gloucester Old Spot pigs and marketing their produce. I have successfully finished my first batch and plan to purchase further stock in the early spring with the intention of eventually breeding my own stock. I am also looking at starting a small flock of pedigree Norfolk Horn sheep.
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Young Farmers are extremely supportive of new business start-ups and have fantastic subsidised training opportunities available, which is how I successfully passed my trailer test which will enable me with transporting pigs and sheep.
My Young Farmers journey began when I joined Acle Countrysiders in 2009 and then subsequently moved on to Acle Young Farmers' Club and North Walsham Young Farmers' Club.
I am extremely proud to be part of the Young Farmers community and it has given me lifelong friends and contacts, as well as amazing opportunities. My time as a member is soon coming to an end but I will ensure that I remain an active supporter of the federation for many years to come. I would strongly recommend joining young farmers to any young person in the rural community who is looking to become involved with a social group as it has been an invaluable experience.
Name: Matthew Davey
Occupation: Graduate rural surveyor at Arnolds Keys - Irelands Agricultural
YFC Club: North Walsham
How long have you been a YFC member: Off and on since the age of 15
- For more details about Norfolk Young Farmers contact the county office on 01603 731307.