It is more than 30 years since the first Farmers’ Charity Auction in Cumbria was held and, since then more than £100,000 has been raised for worthwhile causes.
Plans are now well under way for the 2014 sale, which will be held at Borderway Mart, Carlisle, on January 24. Once again it is hoped that businesses and farmers and the rural community will dig deep to donate goods to go under the hammer.
When the sale was held in the wake of the foot-and-mouth crisis, generous donations totalled £32,700. When it was resurrected five years ago with Blue Peter presenter and vCumbrian farmer’s daughter Helen Skelton opening the bidding, another £30,000 was raised.
This year the aim is to raise event more for the chosen charities which include Hospice at Home, Life Education Centres and FCN – the Farming Community Network - Headway, the brain injury association, and the Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institution.
The event is being supported by H&H Borderway, Carlisle, Cumberland and Dumfriesshire Farmers Mart, Longtown, Penrith and District Farmers Mart, Hopes of Wigton, Mitchells at Cockermouth and NFU Carlisle.
Auction chairman Nick Utting said: “Once again, the enthusiasm for another charity auction is immense.
“All the auction companies and NFU offices in the area have pledged their support and we have already received a number of lots to sell, ranging from livestock to weekends away in London. It looks like we are going to have a busy day with the likelihood of beating the previous record for cash raised.
“There is also a surprise in store for those present as the auction companies have promised some hilarious entertainment.”
Donations over the years have included a Belgian blue bullock from Messrs Hall, of Inglewood Edge, near Skelton, which sold for £800. Solicitor Tim Cartmell’s offer of dinner for eight people at his house fetched £500 while cattle minerals donated by Carrs Billington sold for £700.
To donate goods or promises to the 2014 auction please contact Carlisle@nfumutual.co.uk or call 01228 523034. Alternatively, contact your local auction company.