Hawick high school pupil Kyle Bell won the Rural Skills for Pupils Award at the Lantra Scotland annual award in Dunblane recently.
The awards were presented by celebrity chef Nick Nairn at a star-studded event and gala dinner on March 5 at the Doubletree by Hilton Dunblane Hydro Hotel, sponsored by leading independent salmon producer, The Scottish Salmon Company.
Kyle attends the Borders College SchoolPlus Programme. This pioneering project involves S4 pupils taking part in a land-based curriculum one day per week, enabling learners to get genuine work-based experience as part of the school curriculum.
Kyle lives in Hawick with his mother, but spends as much time as possible out in the countryside helping his dad and grandfather.
Speaking to the Hawick News this week, Kyle said: “It’s great to win this award.
“I’d like to thank dad and granddad, as well as my teachers at Hawick High School and Borders College, for supporting me.
“My dad and grandad have been running the family farm for many years and they taught me everything I know. I love working outdoors and I’m keen to learn more about livestock farming and agriculture.
“My next aim is to go to college to learn about different aspects of farming, particularly arable farming.” Andrew Johnson, Borders College said: “Kyle spends a lot of time helping his grandad Robin Bell on the farm with theirsuckler cows and hill sheep.
“On the school day, Kyle is a real grafter, he is always first to start working and never wants to take a break. He is always enthusiastic no matter what task we are carrying out. I am delighted that Kyle has applied to come to Borders College next year to join the agricultural course.”
Lantra Scotland’s Land-based and Aquaculture Learner of the Year Awards 2015 were attended by 220 people.
Guests celebrated the achievements of 29 talented winners and runners up across 16 award categories – the highest numbers since the awards began in 2003.