2017 winner Ben Theaker


Sponsored by: Kubota

Benjamin Theaker

Nottingham Trent University

Hailing from a non-farming background, Benjamin gained A levels before securing a summer’s harvest on local Worksop Manor Farm, which eventually turned into a year’s work placement.

Realising his potential, the owner sponsored him to attend university, where he graduated with a triple distinction and a host of practical qualifications. He also undertook successful work placement including in the dairy sector, an area new to him but one he is interested in finding out more about as he progresses in his career.

Ben has shown the Brackenhurst Lincoln red herd at Newark and Lincolnshire, achieving champion breed. He has also been selected to be part of the Nottingham Trent University team for the Cereals Challenge in 2017.


As an active member and vice chairman of Nottingham YFC, he went on to gather support and establish Brack YFC after spotting an opportunity to bring fellow students together and establish a calendar of competitions, activities and fundraising. Prior to this the students who lived in accommodation had little to do on an evening but now the club is in full swing and being enjoyed by 30 students.

After a college trip to the Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust he was inspired by the achievements he saw in linking the environment and farming together for example agroforestry which incorporates grazing livestock and increasing trees. This has partly inspired me to take up this job.

Keen to implement what he saw, he has returned to the farm full-time and now contributes to its future development, including improvement of soil systems and grazing of livestock. He one day hopes to become estate manager.

On winning the award, Benjamin says: I’m really really pleased with how far I came when I never thought I would even hear back from my application form. I keep thinking back to the time of filling in the form thinking to myself should I shouldn’t I but am I glad I did! It was lovely to get to know a handful of the farming elite on the night and some of which I have made contact with after the event, I wish I could do it every year.

The judges said about Ben: From a non-farming background, Benjamin was given an opportunity to go to university which he grasped with both hands. With an excellent grasp of the challenges facing UK agriculture, Ben is, without doubt, one to watch in the future. A charming and honest young man.