A GAMEKEEPING student has become the first ever winner of a new trophy.
Ben Pocklington, from Authorpe, is a student at Bishop Burton College and was given the Frank Jenkins Trophy for being the best gamekeeping student or apprentice of the academic year.
The trophy, donated to the National Gamekeepers’ Organisation (NGO) by the family of the late Frank Jenkins as a result of a collection made at Frank’s funeral, was presented to Ben by the organisation’s Chairman Lindsay Waddell on the NGO stand at the recent CLA Game Fair.
Ben was nominated for the award by his tutor at Bishop Burton College, Norman Dalleywater, and supported by Joseph Nickerson Farms on whose Rothwell Estate he also works as an apprentice.
Both said he was an ‘exceptional young gamekeeper’ and although nominations were received for students from colleges all over the country, Ben emerged as the winner after judging was carried out by NGO President David Clark and by Brian Hayes of the NGO Educational Trust.
Bishop Burton College principal Jeanette Dawson paid tribute to Ben’s fantastic achievement.
She said: “It’s always gratifying to see one of our students win a prestigious award such as this, but when it’s the first ever presentation of a trophy it’s very special indeed.
“It’s clear Ben is a very talented and determined young man and to see his efforts rewarded in this way is very pleasing.”
Ben received the handsome annual trophy, an engraved glass tankard to keep and a coat, presented by Frank’s family.
Frank Jenkins was a keeper for 63 years who was still gamekeeping when he died aged 83. He worked particularly in Worcestershire and Buckinghamshire and was represented at the presentation by his son Martin, also a gamekeeper, and daughter Jennifer.