Extensive talks were being held to determine the future of Young Farmers’ biggest date in the calendar, following anti-social behaviour during May’s AGM in Blackpool.
While the National Federation of Young Farmers Clubs’ (NFYFC) reiterated the actions were only carried out by a minority of the 6,000 young people who attended the event, all of whom have since had their memberships withdrawn, a joint statement from NFYFC and Blackpool Council confirmed arrangements for 2019 had been put on hold.
It said representatives from Lancashire Police and the Winter Gardens were also involved.
The statement said: “Both the council and NFYFC are shocked and saddened by the nature of some of the complaints.
“It was agreed there should be a thorough review of whether the event should go ahead in Blackpool next May.
“As a result, the arrangements for 2019 have been put on hold pending further talks about the future viability of the event."
Going forward, the group said it would consider the nature of the complaints and the ‘risks associated with running another event’ to limit the impact on the reputation of both the resort and NFYFC.
But Yorkshire Federation of Young Farmers Clubs vice-chairman Ed Bentley, who played a major role in the overturning of the 30 per cent levy increase at the AGM last month, said if the next generation was to miss out on the annual event, ‘their lives would be all the poorer for it’.
He said the convention was a great opportunity to meet like-minded people while broadening ‘horizons, skills and experiences’.
Mr Bentley said: “For many YFC members, the National AGM is a highlight in their calendar.
“The weekend gives members some time away from working life on-farm, enjoying entertainment such as top radio DJs, competitions including pantomime and Senior Member of the Year, and of course the federation’s national AGM.
“It would be such a shame to see this lost over a minority of individuals not representing the true values of the YFC movement.”
During this year’s event, a group of young farmers were filmed standing in the middle of the road and kicking vehicles, with one stealing the keys from a car stopped at traffic lights.
NFYFC said a final decision would be made as soon as possible.