Ron Urquhart, farms manager at Seafield Estate, was recently presented with a special award in recognition of his efforts to boost children’s understanding about agriculture and the working countryside.
The chairman of the Royal Northern Countryside Initiative (RNCI), Billy Stewart, paid a surprise visit to Cullen Primary School, where Ron was talking to its P2 class, and presented an unsuspecting Ron with the John Telfer Trophy for outstanding achievement. The trophy is awarded annually to farmer who makes the most valuable contribution to help the RNCI in its work to ‘take the classroom to the countryside.’ Ron, who has been regularly advising the class on it Totally Tattie project – which helps children with their numeracy in a hands-on fun way through growing potatoes in class – also helped organise an Open Day at Seafield Estate last year where hundreds of local schoolchildren and their teachers learned about farming, forestry and rural sporting activities. He has also contributed to the ‘Scotland’s Farming Year’ film which helps children understand where food comes from.
Billy Stewart praised Ron’s major contribution in helping children and teachers in the north east to develop a greater understanding of countryside matters. He said: “Ron is a pleasure to work with and nothing is ever too much trouble for him. He has a great link with Cullen School where his visits are very popular with pupils and staff alike.”
Ron said he was stunned to receive the award: “I never even knew it existed. I was just doing my usual stint at the school when I saw Bill and thought he was checking up on me, until I saw a big smile on his face. I totally enjoy working with the kids. They are good fun and they are just like wee learning machines.”